Welcome!

Loose Leaf Security is an independently produced podcast from Liz Denys and Geoffrey Thomas about making good computer security practice for everyone. We believe you don't need to be a software engineer or security professional to understand how to keep your devices and data safe. In every episode, we break down complex digital security and privacy topics into accessible primers and practical takeaways.

You can find Loose Leaf Security on many podcast clients or stream our episodes in your web browser. You can also follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

In addition to podcast episodes, we'll also be covering some security- and privacy-related topics in blog-style articles, where we can go into more detail than we could in an episode. We also send out a weekly newsletter that includes a practical tip about improving your personal digital security, short summaries of relevant security news, and any thought-provoking articles we've seen about digital privacy and security.

If you're new to Loose Leaf Security, you might want to check out our archives for some suggestions on where to start and a complete list of our episodes, articles, and reference materials.

Our latest episode:

Covering your webcams

Liz and Geoffrey take a look at how attackers compromise webcams and discuss why it's worth physically covering them. Malware and alleged threats of malware are only some of the avenues attackers take to access other people's webcams; vulnerabilities in legitimate software, like the recent Zoom security flaw, can also be exploited. Additionally, sharing ownership of your devices with another party like your school district or workplace may leave you and your webcams exposed. In the news, the FTC fines Facebook, weaknesses in Apple's iMessage and Visual Voicemail, and U2F support added to Firefox for Android.

Covering your webcams episode art

Continue reading for the show notes and complete transcript…

Other recent episodes:

  • Password managers: how they should work and when they didn't: Liz and Geoffrey discuss password manager extensions in depth: everything from how they keep your passwords safe from malicious websites to how they sync your passwords between your devices to how they've made mistakes in the past. If you haven't… (June 27, 2019)
  • Two-factor tidying: With a wide variety of possible two-factor authentication methods, it's difficult to keep track of which ones you're using - and which ones you could be using. Liz and Geoffrey talk about their personal strategies and how to handle difficult cases… (May 16, 2019)
  • Using a password manager effectively: In a deeper exploration of password manager browser extensions and features for sharing as well as a survey of alternatives to password managers, Liz and Geoffrey go back to the topic of Loose Leaf Security's very first episode and discuss how… (March 20, 2019)

See all of our episodes sorted by release date, most recent first.

Our latest article:

Loose Leaf Security Weekly, Issue 28

Happy April! Though the world around us seems to be on hold in many ways, security and privacy news isn't slowing down - we're pretty happy to see lots of media attention on Zoom, which we discuss in detail in this newsletter. Also, attackers and miscreants can do their work just as well from home, so there's been no shortage of security updates.

If someone forwarded this to you, you can sign up yourself at https://looseleafsecurity.com/newsletter.

Tip of the week

Among the many types of corporate misbehavior in response to the pandemic is a sudden popularity of software that spies on your personal computer to "ensure" that you're still working. We discussed this sort of thing in our episode "Covering your webcams," in which we also covered the case of a school district that had installed camera-monitoring software on the laptops they sent home with students. Another common case of remote-monitoring spyware is for so-called "online proctored" exams: schools and colleges are often requiring students to install software that both watches their activity on the computer and watches them by webcam. In the episode, we suggested that - if possible - we'd try to get a work-owned or school-owned laptop …

Continue reading…

Other recent articles:

  • Loose Leaf Security Weekly, Issue 27: Hello again! We hope you're staying safe and healthy, wherever you are. If someone forwarded this to you, you can sign up yourself at https://looseleafsecurity.com/newsletter. Tip of the week Many of us are starting to do our work over… (March 27, 2020)
  • Loose Leaf Security Weekly, Issue 26: We're sorry this week's newsletter is a bit late - the two of us haven't been able to meet up in person because we've been practicing "social distancing" to help contain the novel coronavirus, and we're still adjusting to working remotely and… (March 19, 2020)
  • Loose Leaf Security Weekly, Issue 25: We're a bit sad to admit daylight savings time caught us both by surprise on Sunday, but hopefully, security issues won't catch you by surprise because you read this newsletter. If someone forwarded this to you, you can sign up yourself at… (March 10, 2020)

See all of our articles sorted by release date, most recent first.