"Cracking" is nothing new on the Internet and some people simply refuse to pay for anything. People who would never dream of shoplifting a loaf of bread can regularly be found downloading "warez" (pirated software), "crackz" (software which disables shareware restrictions) and illegal "serialz".

It recently came to my attention that at least two user accounts were being posted on some rather unsavory sites. I immediately disabled the logins when I found out about it, but not before a few people were able to get in and download the same artwork that you so generously supported with your membership fees. I pay for the bandwidth on this server, so I was charged for every byte they stole. Needless to say, I was not happy.

I have taken steps to prevent such access in the future. It is impossible for me to tell with 100% certainty who is a legitimate user and who is not, but I can't let that stop me from taking action to protect myself. 99% of you will most likely never notice my new security system, but there does exist the remote possiblity that legitimate users may get snagged. If your login activity triggers my "watchdog", your account will be immediately suspended pending my review of the situation and you will be shown a message detailing how to get your account turned on again.

What will trigger the security system?. Unfortunately I can't give that out, even to you. I will say that you should avoid letting someone else use your login information for any reason. Never divulge your username to anyone (not to mention your password), as a valid username makes a cracker's job much (MUCH) easier. If you feel your password is too easy to guess you can change it here.

I will never ask you for your username or password. If you write to me and need to know your login, then you will need to provide me with the redemption codes you were given when you signed up. If you don't have them, then you must give at least the email address you signed up under. If for some strange reason I cannot locate your user information, I will create an new login for you from scratch.

I appreciate your patience as I work to make sure that only true members can access my gallery. I hope you understand that all of my security measures are designed to protect your investment. Thanks for reading this.

last updated Tuesday, 01-Dec-2009 09:22:14 CST

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