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 short summaries of interesting security news.

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:

Instagram 'Unusual Login Attempt' verification loop failures

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. This is our first article, a deeper dive into a strange problem with Instagram logins that Liz ran into recently. Stay tuned for both upcoming posts and podcast episodes!

Liz's experiences with "Unusual Login Attempt" verification loop failures

Last week, I got locked out of my personal Instagram account for about an hour. Here's what happened and how I found another way back in.

On August 2, 2019, I logged into my personal Instagram account on my laptop and changed the password as a part of my routine security checkup. As I also post to another Instagram account, namely @looseleafsecure, I logged out after changing my personal account's password to update that account's password as well. After updating @looseleafsecure's password, I logged out and attempted to log back into my personal Instagram account. For whatever reason, I believe the 1Password extension autofilled my old password - my new password was longer than my old password, and I remember the dots representing hidden character covering less of the text field than I …

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