An Unexpected Gift From Some Hackers

I’ve recently become a hacker magnet and I’m surprised by what it shined a light on for me.

A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from PayPal confirming a transaction that I didn’t initiate. It was a transfer of a significant amount of money to a person I didn’t know.

I contacted PayPal to alert them of the fraudulent transaction and they rectified it quickly.

Fast forward five days and I get a fraud alert text from my business credit card. An unusual charge triggered the inquiry.

Someone hacked into my Facebook account and initiated an ad campaign with a budget of several hundred dollars per day. Thanks to the alert, I was able to go into my account and stop the madness.

Then, just a few days later, a friend of mine emailed me.

“Hey, either you’ve been hacked or you’ve done a complete 180 in your business. I got an email with this blog post today.”

He proceeded to paste an article about mail-order brides below his note!

Seriously? I had just spent the last week or so putting out hacking fires and now this.

I saw his email while on a break at the studio where I was recording the audiobook version of From Clutter to Clarity (due out in December ☺️).

I called my tech person and filled her in on all the mayhem. She jumped on the case, resetting passwords and ensuring nothing else was compromised.

My assistant, Brooke, took care of deleting the blog posts while the audio engineer waved me back into the studio to get going again.

It was a lot.

Putting out fires is a superpower of mine. When problems arise, I jump into action. But sometimes I worry that being so efficient at doing so invites the universe to send more and more.

That’s when I have to remind myself to take the important next steps: review and reconfigure.

Once I got some space from all the hacking, I reviewed how it all played out. What stuck out to me the most was the strong evidence of the various gatekeepers in my life, for which I am incredibly grateful.

I’m grateful that I have the setting selected in PayPal to email me when any transaction occurs and that they put the money back into my account so quickly.

I’m grateful for my credit card company and their immediate alert about a strange charge.

I’m grateful for my friend, Bruce, who brought the way-off-base blog posts to my attention.

I’m grateful for my tech master, Terry, for calmly investigating how this may have happened and taking immediate measures to lock things down even more.

I’m grateful for my rock star assistant, Brooke, for her quick work in getting the inappropriate blog posts off my site.

And I’m grateful for my wife, Melissa, for being the ever-present, loving gatekeeper of my sanity.

As I reviewed the situation, I was pleasantly surprised that the first place my mind went to was gratitude. It would have been easy to go to the “poor me” place, but what does that accomplish? It just keeps you in the misery of the experience. I know that all too well.

Now it was time for the next step: reconfigure.

Although I had a lot of protective measures in place, clearly they weren’t enough. It’s time to secure the doors even more.

I changed all of my passwords to ones that are long, random, and complex.

I closed my credit card and had the bank issue me a new one.

And I cleaned up any administrators on my website that were no longer relevant.

By taking additional steps, I ensure my systems are operating optimally. If I skip this part, more fires will likely erupt because I never soaked the embers.

Ya gotta address the source of any issue or the symptoms keep popping up. Amiright?

While this was all a big pain in the ass, I’m also grateful for the reminder of how everything in our lives can always use some fine-tuning. Too often we tolerate “meh” when we deserve YEAH!

I know that being forced to deep clean stuff that wasn’t on my radar opens my life up even more for expansion and abundance. So yeah, it sucked, but I got to the other side and am now more equipped to play even bigger in my life.

This week, shift your gaze from the big, obvious needs that are calling out to you and look at what could use some tweaks or fine-tuning.

Your health?

Your boundaries?

Your budget?

You want all systems to be a GO as you continue to play bigger and bigger.

No “meh” for you, trailblazer.

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