Mark (mhaithaca) wrote,

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End of a 15-year era?

The last vestiges of Memory Alpha, the computer BBS (bulletin board system) I ran for ten years, have just been turned off. Before the Internet was a household concept, I offered (among other features) Internet e-mail to anyone who wanted it, and could dial into my system with a modem. Memory Alpha ran from early 1990 until early 2000... an unusually long run.

Unfortunately, today, there's been a sudden torrent of virus-laden e-mails to addresses, and this has prompted me to finally turn off the mail routing that plops it all into my current mailbox. Since Memory Alpha shut down over five years ago, and I was primarily using my current address for almost five years before that, there shouldn't still be anyone with that e-mail address for me, but it was still nice to know that someone could reach me if they dug up a ten-year-old piece of correspondence and decided to get back in touch.

What's saddest about this is that I was forced into shutting down a probably rarely used, but potentially valuable, mail route simply because of malware. Some evil twerp of a malicious programmer, probably co-opting the assistance of an unwitting and ignorant computer user who didn't keep Windows adequately patched, has rendered a long-time e-mail address unavailable to me.

The domain name still exists, and I could turn the mail routing back on, but since the evil twerps will continue to exist, and the unwitting and ignorant computer users will continue to aid and abet them, I don't dare. I just wish I could expect something would change before the e-mail addresses I actually use become useless.

Do me a favour. If you've got any of my e-mail addresses stored on your computer, please make sure your computer is adequately secured. Thanks.

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