The numbers sound a little confusing and staggering. Hundreds of millions of email addresses are now in the hands of the scientists who built the experimental training computer machine for Ivan Drago.
But what does this mean for you?
Here are some FAQs and ways to make sure this computer thing doesn’t escalate into the Russians parachuting into your high school quad and shooting up your history teacher during a lecture on the Mongols:
Was my identity stolen?
Not really. If you still can botch punchlines to jokes; if you’re the guy who buys the first round to get out of having to get more later in the night; if you’ve told a girl you dropped out of law school to pursue your dream in online marketing when you never even applied to law school; if you get four likes or fewer on the picture of a vacation margarita including part of your hand, #si!—then you’re still you. The Russians can never take that away.
How do I know if my information was stolen?
It pretty much was. But that’s OK. I’m sure Capital One won’t mind the Russians actually paying on time for you this month. And even though your mom is going to get emails from you about discount Viagra …well, at least you’re emailing her.
Should I change my passwords?
If you can remember your password in the first place, then yes. Maybe. Otherwise, the Russians encourage you to use a password manager site like Password Safe because then they can hack into that as well and get those. My go-to password is 54321, a variant on the commonly used 12345. Because, well, fuck it—if Matthew Broderick drinking a Tab can figure out the launch codes, we’re all pretty much screwed (and have been for decades) anyways.
Is changing passwords enough to protect myself?
No. Even though it’s not the ’90s and Left Eye doesn’t use one as a monocle, condoms are still a pretty good idea—ESPECIALLY if she says she’s using birth control and/or has some script tattoo on her side (double bag it if it’s an excerpt from Alice and Wonderland). Also, make sure you give at least two arm’s length to the guy in front of you at the ATM, especially the ones in food courts. Try for eight hours sleep every night. Don’t get sucked into that new Leah Remini reality show like I did the other night. Her mother looks like Mrs. Roper waiting for a new kidney. Instead wait for her book revealing how fucking crazy Scientology is. Everyone should also watch Tremors at least once a year. I’ve been doing that now for more than two decades and I’ve never been hacked. I don’t know if the two have any correlation but I feel like Michael Gross and Kevin Bacon will protect you from everything including childhood obesity, low test scores, late fees on DMV registration, high cholesterol and general malaise/anxiety (OK, I made that last one up).
Is it enough to just change my password?
No. As long as you’re throwing something important out and starting over, take a look at your wardrobe. That Wilson’s Suede & Leather jacket either has to be ironically worn to your next hourly wage job interview or it’s got to go. I’m thinking of starting a service that turns leather jackets from the last two decades into leather Teddy Bears. Like send your jacket in and get a leather Teddy Bear in the mail a 6-8 weeks later (same leather not guaranteed). I don’t know. I think It’d be pretty cool and a way to breathe new life into used mall leather. Who doesn’t want a leather Teddy …Bear? Also www.usedleatherteddybear.com is available. How in the effin hell is this URL still out there? I guess for the same reason www.fabioloves.com and www.myownprivatekeanu.com are also swimming freely in the seas of the unfinished internet.
How can I stop my information from being stolen?
As Barry Gibb asked in ’71, How can you mend a broken heart? Some questions just don’t have answers. It just takes time. Someday, when you die, hopefully your clever relatives will print all your passwords in your obit with a line at the bottom that says, “See, none of it fucking mattered anyway.”