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September 2016 Newsletter

Introduction

The political landscape is really heating up in 2016!

I don't know if you've heard, but there's kind of a huge election coming up in the United States this November.

It's all anyone's talking about on the web, worldwide!

The one question on everyone's mind is WHO will get the most votes this November 8th in the Illinois state comptroller special election!

Republican incumbent Leslie Munger has held the position since 2015 when she was named to the post by Governor Bruce Rauner, replacing former comptroller Judy Topinka who died shortly after being elected in 2014. You no doubt remember that fateful time - it sent the future of the state's finances into a whirlwind of uncertainty.

The world of comptrolling rarely sees twists and turns like this!

Libertarian candidate Claire Ball owns a home, a husband, and has a Masters in accounting. She claims her only special interests are the people of Illinois, but how much can you trust someone with two cats?

Green Party candidate Tim Curtain comes from a union background and wants to put people first! He says he'll do that by rolling back cuts made to education and social services, but let's be honest, Green Party people never win anything. You have to respect the guy for trying.

Susana Mendoza could really give Leslie a run for her monies. This Democratic candidate increased compliance and fraud prevention for city vehicle stickers as Chicago City Clerk, so imagine what she could do comptrolling for the entire freaking state of Illinois! Some have raised questions about her ability to make sound decisions when news of her skydiving hobby first broke, but that's dirty politics for you.

Yes, Leslie Munger certainly has her work cut out for her if she wants to retain the jewel-encrusted Illinois Comptroller crown this November. Sure, she may have bravely led the state through unprecedented hardship caused by a year-long budget impasse, prioritizing payments for nonprofits and social services... But can she prioritize the pens in the hands of the Illinois electorate to check the box next to her name this November?

TIME WILL TELL.

-Brett
@DreamHostBrett

NEW: DreamHost Malware Remover!

Malware is the worst, and as a website owner it can bring your blog or business to a screeching halt.

Over the years we've seen a huge variety of the types of attacks - and attempted attacks - that bad actors can throw at a website. Even with 19 years of experience under our belts (as of September 23rd, thank you very much!) we're still surprised and annoyed whenever new attack vectors and web tech vulnerabilities hit the scene.

These bad actors? They're not friendly, grandfatherly-types like William Shatner. No, sir. They're more like...identity thieves. Foreign agents. SEO spammers. They don't care who they're hurting as long as they're able to commandeer yet another website for their nefarious purposes.

For the past few years our security team has been building - and constantly improving - a tool that we've used internally to scan and repair (when possible) customer data when malware comes knocking.

We've spent the last few months working hard to put that powerful tool directly into your hands, and this month we did exactly that!

For just $1.50 per month, per domain, we will scan any of your sites weekly for known vulnerabilities. If any are found we'll alert you, attempt to correct the problem automatically, and throw another coat of polish on our "Internet Good Citizen" award.

We wanted to make our Malware Remover both affordable and easy to use, and it's all that. For sure.

Enabling our Malware Remover for any of your domains is as simple as clicking a single button from within your account control panel:

DreamHost KB: How do I enable the Malware Remover Service?

One click now could save you thousands of keystrokes later, some of which won't even register because your tears dripped between the keys and ended up breaking the keyboard.

UPDATE: Domain Privacy!

For a very long time we've given you the option of anonymizing your domain registrations' contact information.

Bad actors of all types are everywhere, you see. John Travolta, for example.

There's a lot of good reasons for hiding this contact information, but among them all, "I don't want to get murdered by an angry rando from the Internet" has always carried the most weight in my mind.

In order to continue to provide you with this life-saving service, we've been asked by ICANN to make some changes to the way we implement domain privacy at DreamHost.

For the full scoop, check our blog:

DreamHost Blog: Domain Privacy Update

The TLDR version is that we've had to change our terms of service, we've had to create a completely new and separate company to protect your private contact information, and we're all very tired of navigating bureaucratic red tape.

But hey, we should be all set now!

NEW: Webmail and Filtering!

If you check your DreamHost-hosted email on the web with SquirrelMail or Roundcube, you may have noticed something a littttle different this month.

They're gone!

We've replaced both of these aging web-based mail clients with one that is fast, feature-rich, and in constant development.

atmail is the name of the game!

DreamHost KB: Benefits of atmail

While we're not entirely certain why atmail doesn't capitalize their name, we DO know that you've told us you're happy with what you've seen of it so far!

If you find yourself pining for the good ol' days, you're more than welcome to download and install SquirrelMail or Roundcube locally on your account.

SquirrelMail.org

Roundcube.net

But really, give atmail some time! You'll love it! Probably!

We've also launched a brand new behind-the-scenes spam filter from Vade Secure. Vade Secure analyzes incoming email to flag spam, scam messages, phishing attempts, viruses, and Trojan horses.

You know who loves to send this stuff? Bad actors. Not like Zach Braff - I'm talking more like identity thieves and ransomware enthusiasts.

For more information about how Vade Secure works, be sure to check out our knowledge base:

DreamHost KB: How anti-spam filters work

In the near future we'll also be turning on Vade Secure's advanced graymail classification, making it easier for you to filter things like newsletters (AHEM), social network notifications, and mailing list messages into neat and tidy folders within your inbox.

SALE: A bunch of TLDs!

With literally *hundreds* of options to hang on the caboose of your domains, the Top Level Domain market has never been more bonkers!

All this competition in the world of domain butts has led some registries to experiment with pricing, and we're happily able to pass on those savings to you!

The following TLDs are now on sale for a limited time:

.online $1.95 (normally $29.95) 93% off
.site $0.99 (normally $29.95) 96% off
.xyz $0.99 (normally $12.99) 92% off
.club $0.99 (normally $19.99) 95% off
.store $8.95 (normally $49.95) 82% off

Please note that these discounts apply to the first year's registrations of new domains only.

Honestly, these domain registration sales come up pretty frequently, so keep your eyes on the "Sale" tab at https://www.dreamhost.com/tlds/ if you're serious about scoring some sweet deals on some HOT STUFF!

In September we also added the ability for you to register domains that end in .games, .shopping, and .shop, at DreamHost! They're not on sale, but can you really put a price on registering the perfect domain?

Ah wait, I've just been handed something from our accounting department. Yes. Yes, okay. I can confirm that these things do cost money.

You can register new domains to your DreamHost account at any time from your control panel:

DreamHost Web Panel: Domain Registrations

You know who gets paid a lot of money? Bad actors. The Hayden Christensens of the world can afford many, many domains.

DreamHost WTF: Let's Encrypt!

What's that feature? It's Let's Encrypt!

If you've ever used a credit card on the web, you're probably very familiar with the padlock icon in your browser that indicates a secure connection.

Up until a few months ago, the only way to encrypt traffic between your website and its visitors (with all the associated secure browser icons) was to shell out money for a "secure certificate."

These virtual certificates would have the effect of authenticating your site with its visitors, forming a secure two-way tunnel between them.

The only downside? Secure certificates cost money. Somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 per domain, per year.

Let's Encrypt is a project that brings those same certificates, free of charge, to anyone that wants one!

Now any website owner can get that padlock on their site with a minimum of hassle in just a few minutes.

DreamHost KB: Let's Encrypt SSL Certificate Overview

If you're not accepting credit cards on the web, why would you care?

I'll give you a hint. It's two words. They both rhyme with Edward Snowden.

The words are Edward Snowden.

Edward Snowden brought to light the fact that, at any given time, the Internet is being monitored, recorded, and mined for information by not only the US government, but also by people with questionable motives.

We're talking bad actors.

Real Nicolas Cage types, if you catch my meaning.

Adding a free Let's Encrypt certificate to any of your domains is incredibly quick and easy. We've documented the whole process for you in our knowledge base:

DreamHost KB: How do I add a free Let's Encrypt Certificate?

DreamHost Site Of The Month

A website can receive no higher honor than to be named a DreamHost Site Of The Month. It is the website award that all other website awards aspire to be.

Each month YOU submit your sites for consideration and one lone DreamHost employee picks their favorite. That person is me.

This month's site of the month iiiiiis....

Weekly Fifty
"Exploring the wonders of creation through a 50mm lens"

http://www.weeklyfifty.com/

The ol' Nifty Fifty! Every week, photographer Simon Ringsmuth posts a new photo shot with a 50mm lens to weeklyfifty.com. Not only does he write up a little blurb about each one, but he also walks you through his entire picture taking process with weekly audio commentary. It's like you're onsite, right next to this guy, getting an education.

Thanks for submitting, @sringsmuth!

Every month we get a bunch of really good entries for the DreamHost SOTM, and you should check them out! I'm serious. Do yourself a favor and spend a few minutes digging through them all!

View DreamHost Site Of The Month Entries

Please note - bad actors have never won the DHSOTM. The Sylvester Stallones of the world are continually disappointed month after month.

If you'd like your site to be considered as a site of the month, just TWEET your site's URL(s) with the #DreamHostSOTM hashtag and we'll take it from there. Enter as many months as you like!

We'll search through all the entries at the end of the month and assign a winner to the one site that tickles our fancies the most.

Bye!

See ya next month!
Brett D!
@DreamHostBrett

P.S. - If you have no passion for politics, consider unsubscribing from this newsletter here:

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