Sunday, January 12, 2014

Almost Nobody Controls Their Own Computer, Exclusively

This month, we're seeing reports in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about problems uploading pictures (images, photos) to our blogs.

The monolithic advice, provided by Blogger
Use Draft Blogger!
suggests that Blogger Engineering knows about the problem, and has a quick fix in their beta testing environment, Blogger In Draft. Some blog owners have found this to be effective - as a short term solution.

Not everybody, however, finds all Blogger released fixes to be consistently effective. Many times, this is because very few people control their own computers.

Outside of corporate owned computers, managed under a very restrictive corporate security policy, no two computers in the world are identical.

Every different computer owner has their own opinions what products should be used, to keep their own computers safe from malicious influence. Most security products contain filters.

Filters can block both cookies and scripts, essential components in Blogger code. Many filters use hashed values, known as "signatures", to index their databases of problem cookies and scripts. The filters are updated automatically, by the vendors of the software.

Filters occasionally contain signature references which cause Blogger cookies and scripts to be blocked. Other filters can block website access. This is why many owners go from "It's working.", to "It's broken!" - and "I never changed anything!!!".

There are many differing security products - in the browsers, on the computers, and even on the networks - used by the different owners. Almost everybody uses some security products - or their computers become part of the botnet universe, and help the bad guys to serve us our hacking and spam.

Here is the reality. You choose.
  • Use various software products - and your computer becomes controlled by security product vendors, and updated automatically.
  • Use no security products - and your computer becomes controlled by hackers and spammers, and updated automatically.
It's Hobson's Choice, for sure.

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3 comments:

Carole M. said...

a good post Chuck, I understand what you're pointing out here. As I've written previously, this is understandably a big challenge for Google/Blogger to continually be monitoring and effecting changes to fit the ever-changing jigsaw bought about by our software products. I'm holding tight and watching your updates and suspecting it's not beyond their capabilities to get it happening at some time in the near future.

Sam said...

You paint a dismal picture

Chuck Croll said...

Sam,

Yes, until blog owners can start taking the responsibility for the accessories on their personal computers, the picture is rather dismal.

The security accessories have to have the final word on what data gets passed to the browsers. If it were possible for Blogger to provide code that overrides security settings, what could happen with the websites provided by the hackers?