Saturday, 26 May 2012
A recent law by the EU is shaking heads in the internet world as website owners decide how to react to the new law that makes it illegal for a website not inform users from Europe that the site is using cookies.


Pretty much all websites use cookies and they are rarely used in a sinister way, they are usually used to remember what items you have in shopping cart and remember certain preferences or interests you may have indicated in the past. They improve the experience by making tasks move smoothly and leave the user feeling that computers generally are getting smarter by serving ads and content that is suited to user.


They are used without peoples knowledge, and EU law makers are concerned who has access to the stored data. The data is rarely accessed by humans as it serves algorithms that automatically look for similar content to display.


What does this mean for websites owners?

Website owners now have to make a choice either make changes to accommodate EU users or face of up to a hefty £500,000.00. You could also decide to block all European traffic if your site is geared towards a non-European demographic.


How can I tell if my websites uses cookies?


  • If you have one of the following features on your site then your site uses cookies.
  • A site where you can login to manage or comment and remember a password.
  • Social sharing buttons that allow users to share content directly with services like Twitter and Facebook.
  • A site that uses analytics tracking to monitor stats.
  • Many ad units also use cookies.



How can I make my website compliant to EU cookie law?

There are various methods that can be implemented to comply with the new law and they suit websites based on their function, design and purpose of the website. Some possible adaptions could be:


  • Pop-up
  • Splash screen
  • Header or Footer bar
  • TOS checkbox


Note: each option should be looked at carefully as while the do ensure compliance, they also come with some disadvantages too.


Conclusion

Most websites owners are unhappy about this news and in order to comply with the new rules, the added work will be an unwelcome burden. Many small companies in the EU and tech startups have already stated that they will not comply with new rules, so it will be interesting to see if any action is taken against them.


While increasing rights' and protect individuals privacy and in seeking to improve the education and understanding of internet and the responsibilities of users as a whole is a necessary mandate, should it really be enforced by a law making way for more pesty pop-ups, headers, footers and splash screens that will continue to confuse and put users off. Rather than stifle the growth of an industry that has been growing exceptionally well during the European finical crisis, time could be better spent educating people about cookies and other web terms that will allow this generation and future generations to grasp a better understanding of the internet. And of course look at ways to get Europe's economies back on track.




Thursday, 24 May 2012

Now more than ever there is more reason to sign up for Thexyz Premium Email as users will be able to sync their contacts, calendar and email automatically on iPhone, Android and Windows phone.


With a larger proportion of business being done through a mobile device, these devices need to be faster, smarter and highly secure to keep users updated on the go. Having to remember to manually sync a device by connecting it to a computer can also be too much work. That is why we have worked long and hard at making all mobile devices work seamlessly with our secure email service.


You do not need to worry about the security of your contacts and calendar being synced automatically, as all our Premium Email services are run through encrypted servers employing the 256 bit SSL encryption.


Users have been enjoying the many features of running a Premium account and in a recent poll, nearly all users said it is worth the extra cost. I have spoken to some users that have been using these features on the Blackberry where is has been available for sometime and they have said it has changed the way they do business.


Just yesterday we were speaking to client that uses his phone to talk to clients, adds their details to contacts and makes an appointment, this data is shared securely through an encrypted network to other team members that may need to attend or know about the appointment. The client also said, "what used to take 5 hours, now takes 5 minutes."


This has been great but they all needed to be Blackberry users, now with our latest sync update you can also sync data between the iPhone, Android and Windows phone too.



You can read up here on MobileSync or browse our FAQ


If you already have Thexyz Webmail you can our email device setup tool to setup sync on your device:




Tuesday, 22 May 2012
From reading the WMHCS blog yesterday you can see that something went seriously wrong after they posted about being unfortunate victims of a severe and malicious hack. They did a very good job of keeping users informed during what must have been a very challenging time for the company and it's users.


After hearing back from the hosting company they realized that there was in fact no hacking and the breach was the result of a social engineering attack.


The person responsible was able to impersonate the site owner with their web hosting company, and provide correct answers to their verification questions. And thereby gaining access to their client account with the root password, and ultimately changing the email and then requesting a mailing of the access details.


The services at Thexyz and that of our clients are not run through the WMHCS software so we were not affected by this attack, we do take note of such events as no company you should comprise when it comes to online security.


This matter is under investigation by FBI and more info will follow. If you concerned about being on the list, we do know someone that can check. Feel free to get in touch with us should you think you might be affected. You can also read more on this blog here: http://scripttechs.com/blog/49/whmcs-security-breach/



Changes at Go Daddy…


Is the era of NASCAR and ads featuring large-breasted women coming to a close at Go Daddy? The company’s new CEO is trying to clean up the domain registrar’s image after last winter’s SOPA disaster.


Read more: http://pandodaily.com/2012/05/11/no-more-breasts-elephants-or-sopa-how-warren-adelman-is-saving-go-daddys-soul/


Protecting the Facebook brand


On The Same Week of Its IPO, Facebook Files a UDRP To Gain Control Of Facebook.info. The domain Facebook.info was 1st registered in 2004 and seems to act as Twitter thread for @facebook_info. One more good reason to stay away from trademarked domain names.


Read more: http://www.thedomains.com/2012/05/15/on-the-same-week-of-its-ipo-facebook-files-a-udrp-to-gain-control-of-facebook-info/


Google Penguin Update


From the people that sell text links and back links to many websites each, have a large in interest in the business of buying and selling them so after a major update the Google search algorithm last week called Penguin, you could have expected a nice post like this to put minds of thousands of webmasters at ease.


While there are hundreds of factors in Google's algorithm like content, the age of your domain, your title tags, clean code etc. Links do still play a major role in how well your site indexes. What's happening now is that Google is also comparing link anchor text relative to other anchors that your site is linked to. This will in turn clamp down on the more questionable link building practises. Google wants nothing more than relevant search results and any loopholes or shortcuts to getting a site to appear high up in listings are usually stopped before any benefit is realized.


As for PageRank please keep in mind that Google only update this information about 4 times per year. There are no set dates or timetable, this is only an estimate. So your links would need to remain active for at least 3 months to see any increase in Pagerank. Also the primary benefit of these links will be to your search engine rankings rather then the Pagerank of your website.





Friday, 18 May 2012
The .US Registry has introduced two new compliance policies that are identical to the ones that have been laid down by the .COM and .NET Registry. The following policies are already in place:


Policy for Deletions during Add Grace Period:

The .US Registry has laid down a policy that specifies the percentage of Add Grace Period Deletions that will be refunded in a certain month.


This percentage represents a large number of Domains in our case and you should not face any issue regarding this new policy. However, though unlikely, there might be a scenario where we will not able to offer you a refund for deletions carried out during the AGP.


WHOIS Data Reminder Policy:

As part of this policy change, the WHOIS Data Reminder Mail for .US Domains is now compulsory and will be sent to Registrants once every six months from the date of Registration.


This email will be identical to the WHOIS Data Reminder mails that are currently sent for .COM and .NET Domains.




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