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The 25 worst bad habits with technology and how to fix them

Avoid permanent damage with this handy guide

We've all got bad habits when it comes to technology, whether it's relying on 'password' as your password or shutting down via the power button and not the Windows Start Menu. However, there are some tech bad habits that will cause permanent damage. We've rounded up the 25 worst tech habits that are guaranteed to cause you all sorts of hassles.

21. Ignoring the specs

The big idea in tech today is to offer three classes of product: A bare-bones version, a power-user version, and an 'extreme' version, each with an escalating price tag. The problem is, the extreme edition may not really do anything that the bare-bones version can't do - or it has features you don't actually need - but you buy the expensive one anyway, because you didn't really read the specs. It can take a lot of web research time to figure out the which of the jargon translates to something that's really important - but this is time well invested.

22. Using one password for everything

All it takes is a single data leak at your mobile phone company for a crook to get into your email, bank, investing and online shopping accounts. It's one-stop shopping for identity thieves! Having a unique password for every site is unrealistic, but use a series of several passwords and save your best for the most critical sites. Password managers can help.

23. Not having a disposable email address

Don't give out your regular email address to newsletters, iffy web services and girls or boys you meet after midnight. A disposable email address that you check once a fortnight is a better solution. This is why Gmail was invented.

24. Failing to lock your smartphone

When an unsavoury type finds a lost phone, his first order of business is to call as many international numbers that he humanly can. Then he harvests all the data on it for identity theft and spam purposes. Or you could, you know, prevent all of that by putting a simple PIN on the thing. You can find tools built to manage security for Android and other mobile operating systems.

25. Commenting online

I know: You have the perfect bon mot to counter one of the points on this list, and you're going to enter it painstakingly into the web form at the bottom of this article so you can be clever comment #86 on page four. Congratulations, sir or ma'am. Touché. Seriously, people, this is 2010. If you have something snarky or inflammatory to say, at least have the common courtesy to tweet it (politely).

See also: 15 technology myths: what's nonsense and what's not?

  1. The worst tech bad-habits
  2. Printing everything
  3. Waiting in line
  4. Ignoring the specs

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