Q: How good is the built-in encryption program that came with my 4-gigabyte SanDisk Cruzer Micro flash drive? I use a 512-bit triple encryption program to secure part of the drive, but I find it tedious.
A: You make a good point. Encryption, the protective coding that keeps data from being read by those who don't have the software "key," is available in varying degrees of security.
The 128-bit encryption used by the SanDisk unit is inherently less secure than the encryption you're already using. But, by some estimates, a random attempt to guess the key for 128-bit encryption software could take years, which is longer than most attackers would keep at it.
But encryption isn't a panacea; there are situations when it might not protect your data at all. Studies have shown that encryption keys can be retrieved from a PC that is in sleep mode to conserve energy, or from a laptop that is stolen and subjected to tampering. For details, see a recent article from Wired magazine at http://tinyurl.com/yqchq9.
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Q: I haven't had access to my Yahoo mailbox in weeks. While I'm now using a different Yahoo e-mail account, I'm missing e-mails that are sent to the other one. How can I contact Yahoo?
A: Go to www.yahoo.com and click the "send feedback" link in the fine print at the bottom of the page; that will enable you to send Yahoo a message about its service quality. The company says it reads all submissions, but I've found it can be slow to respond to problems.