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Author Resource Round Table > Any security issues in worldwide distribution?

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message 1: by Jess (last edited Apr 30, 2015 08:05AM) (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments Has anyone come across any security problems distributing eBooks worldwide?

My concern is that my self-published paperback book will soon become an eBook and there's a question on the form that I'm not sure how to answer.

The question is: Are there are any countries that you do Not want your eBook distributed to ?

The form then provides a list of countries & asks that I tick any countries I do not want my book distributed to. Some of the countries are hostile to the UK, some are war-torn & some I've never heard of!

It's concerning given that my email address is provided on the copyright page.
Any advice would be appreciated

Thank you

Jess Welsby

EDIT: To clarify my meaning. My concern is with viruses & spam, not bombs! ;-)


message 2: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Povey | 44 comments The chances of there being any risk to you from somebody in a "hostile" or "war torn" country getting your email address are minimal. Really, seriously.

I distribute my books everywhere.


message 3: by G.G. (new)

G.G. (ggatcheson) | 491 comments Then what about if they find your home address? I don't know about the UK but the US office ask for your home address and it's public on the internet for anyone to see. Now tell me why would they target you in particular when they could target famous authors directly in their homes.

I think you worry too much. You'd be but a needle in a hay stack.


message 4: by Jess (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments Jennifer wrote: "The chances of there being any risk to you from somebody in a "hostile" or "war torn" country getting your email address are minimal. Really, seriously.

I distribute my books everywhere."


My email address is given on the copyright page, Jennifer. I'm both the author & the publisher, so my contact details are given.

I imagined spam & viruses being an issue.


message 5: by Jess (last edited Apr 30, 2015 08:00AM) (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments G.G. wrote: "Then what about if they find your home address? I don't know about the UK but the US office ask for your home address and it's public on the internet for anyone to see. Now tell me why would they t..."

No, I'm not worried about being a target, GG. I'm not meaning that.

My email address is on the copyright page & I wondered if others have experienced any problems with spam & viruses.


message 6: by Ken (last edited Apr 30, 2015 08:30AM) (new)

Ken Doggett (kendoggett) I give only my website in my books. My website has an email address, but it's separate from my personal email. No problems so far. Just be sure not to open any attachments from people you don't know.


message 7: by Jess (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments Ken wrote: "I give only my website in my books. My website has an email address, but it's separate from my personal email. No problems so far. Just be sure not to open any attachments from people you don't ..."

That's sounds sensible Ken. I have used a separate email address. When I self-published the paperback Nielsen's instructions were to put my contact details on the copyright page, which I did, along with FB & Twitter details. But that feels rather vulnerable now that the eBook will be distributed worldwide. So far, the paperback is only on Amazon.co.uk.

I'm still at a loss as to which countries, if any, I should deselect from the extensive list that's on the form.

Thanks for your help.


message 8: by G.G. (new)

G.G. (ggatcheson) | 491 comments Ken wrote: "I give only my website in my books. My website has an email address, but it's separate from my personal email. No problems so far. Just be sure not to open any attachments from people you don't ..."

Or unsolicited attachments. Sometimes they trick you into believing it's from a friend, when it's not. If you don't expect an attachment. DON'T open it PERIOD. Ask your friend first.

Like Ken, I didn't put my email address in my eBooks. I put my Facebook Author page.


message 9: by Jim (last edited Apr 30, 2015 09:07AM) (new)

Jim Vuksic | 1038 comments Allowing wide-spread access to a personal e-mail address will always entail a certain amount of risk. It would be better to have website, that contains a secure communication page, promote your work.

There is nothing that can be done with countries like China that routinely turn a blind eye to copyright infringement and piracy. An author must just accept the fact.


message 10: by Jess (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments Yes, good idea GG. I know it's just the usual common sense to remember before opening any email, but I just wondered if spam emails were a particular problem after worldwide distribution & if there were any countries in particular to avoid distributing to.

The question on the form doesn't explain itself very well.

Thanks everyone


message 11: by Jess (new)

Jess Welsby (jesswelsby) | 6 comments Jim wrote: "Allowing wide-spread access to a personal e-mail address will always entail a certain amount of risk. It would be better to have website, that contains a secure communication page, promote your wor..."

Thanks Jim, I agree. I'd rather just give Facebook & Twitter for contact.


message 12: by J.D. (new)

J.D. Kaplan | 140 comments I maintain a separate email address for my persona as an author. I monitor it daily and carefully segregate my personal life from it. I also have a P.O. Box that I use for any snail mail communications/deliveries, etc

While it's unlikely that you'd have any real problems with these things, it's also a good idea to be careful. Stolen information is trolled for in bulk. It's not a matter of someone waking up and saying, "Hrm. I'm going to go find and steal JD's information" anymore.


message 13: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!


message 14: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 138 comments Dennis wrote: "Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!"

The Middle East includes Israel and a fatwa is only an opinion. Besides, based on the summary of your book I doubt you have anything to worry about.


message 15: by Mark (new)

Mark Stone (calasade) | 53 comments The moment you appear online anyone anywhere can find out anything about you. Actually, the truth of it is as long as someone has your name and can roughly determine the state in which you live, they can learn anything about you, including credit, criminal, employment, and personal history.

An e-mail address on a copyright page makes no difference.


message 16: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Shomeret wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!"

The Middle East includes I..."


First of all, you know which middle east I'm talking about -- I can't be talking about Israel if I mention fatwas, can I? Second of all, no, a fatwa is NOT "only an opinion" -- I used this word in the same sense as Karima Bennoune, which is specifically an order to kill someone for being an infidel. And yes, I do have this to worry about -- the surgeon in my book is a veteran of the Afghan war, and you can probably figure out the rest.


message 17: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Mark wrote: "The moment you appear online anyone anywhere can find out anything about you. Actually, the truth of it is as long as someone has your name and can roughly determine the state in which you live, th..."

If this is true, then this is the most frightening thing in the world -- and this is the reason why the Internet MUST be partitioned by country, for all our sakes!


message 18: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 276 comments I only list the website and the website lists a different contact email. I get unsolicited emails often and just delete them (usually bots & crawlers).
just be mindful before opening.
also determined hackers will find you if they really want to but its just an eBook. be more worried if your ebook ends up on "free" sites.


message 19: by Shomeret (last edited May 04, 2015 10:21PM) (new)

Shomeret | 138 comments Dennis wrote: "Shomeret wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!"

The Middl..."



I am sorry but you are mistaken, Dennis. Please read what the Islamic Supreme Council of America has to say about the definition of fatwa particularly the second paragraph. You should also pay attention to what they say about a fatwa not being enforceable. http://www.islamicsupremecouncil.org/...


message 20: by Mark (last edited May 05, 2015 02:02AM) (new)

Mark Stone (calasade) | 53 comments Dennis wrote: "Mark wrote: "The moment you appear online anyone anywhere can find out anything about you. Actually, the truth of it is as long as someone has your name and can roughly determine the state in which..."

Country has nothing to do with it and partitioning the Internet would be foolish. That would only make things easier for governments to spy on you, including and especially your own if you are from the States. I'm guessing you are, as you display much of the misdirected paranoia typical of my fellow Americans. You worry about threats overseas when the biggest threats are in your own backyard and the government you ask to protect you.

What makes what I said possible are background check companies. You need no permission to run a background check on anyone. If you lack someone's date of birth, SSN, or driver's license, all you need is their first and last name and a rough idea of where they live. Most background check companies on the Internet use a drill-down tactic until the person wanting to run the background check pinpoints the person they want to learn about.

For instance, go to intelius.com (countless sites like this), enter your first and last name and the city and/or state in which you live (all of this easily available online already). Click search. Or Google your name with your city and state. See what comes up. By using information from your Amazon profile, I know you're 33 and potential relatives include Leonid Kitainik and Gabriel Gonzalez. I know that you've also lived in Cupertino. All this without performing a search. It's part of the data the background check company displays as a way to entice the searcher to pay. Prices to perform the search range from $3.95 to $49.95. There are three different types of searches. The most expensive will return literally everything about you.

The reason I know this? I'm a victim of identity theft. Ease of background checks is one of the many reasons identity theft is so prevalent nowadays.


message 21: by Lance (new)

Lance Charnes (lcharnes) | 326 comments Dennis wrote: "Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!"

I dream of having someone put a fatwa on me for Doha 12 , my first novel. If it works for me like it did for Rushdie, I'd get best-sellerdom, a knighthood, a Booker Prize, and I could marry Padma Lakshmi.


message 22: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Mark wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Mark wrote: "The moment you appear online anyone anywhere can find out anything about you. Actually, the truth of it is as long as someone has your name and can roughly determine the..."

Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear! But yes, it's high time to crack down on background check companies!


message 23: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Personally, I wouldn't want any of my books distributed in the middle east -- if those people get their hands on them, they might put a fatwa on my head!"

I dream of having someone ..."


Sounds like just my kind of reading! BTW, have you read Avi Perry's "72 Virgins"?


message 24: by Lance (new)

Lance Charnes (lcharnes) | 326 comments Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."

You have a greater chance of being hit by lightning than being killed by a foreign terrorist.


message 25: by Lance (new)

Lance Charnes (lcharnes) | 326 comments Dennis wrote: "Sounds like just my kind of reading! BTW, have you read Avi Perry's "72 Virgins"?"

No, I haven't heard of it until now.


message 26: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."

You have a greater chance of being hit by lightning than ..."


Tell that to all the people who were murdered on 9/11, or to all the recent victims of Isis terrorism!


message 27: by Sylvie (new)

Sylvie | 55 comments Dennis wrote: "Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."

You have a greater chance of being hit by l..."


Not to mention the many killed by friendly fire in many a conflict and other incidents.


message 28: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."

You have a greater chance of..."


How about the thousands of our soldiers who were murdered by terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq?


message 29: by Sylvie (new)

Sylvie | 55 comments Dennis wrote: "Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."

You have a gr..."


And the tens of thousands of civilians. Some people call them colateral damage. We experienced a lot of that in World War Two here. Though what all this has to do with the original topic, I know not.


message 30: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Kitainik Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all too clear!..."..."

So what? The great majority of them SUPPORT terrorists -- which makes them terrorists in their own right! To hell with them!


message 31: by Sylvie (new)

Sylvie | 55 comments Dennis wrote: "Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Sylvie wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Lance wrote: "Dennis wrote: "Actually, the biggest threats to our life and to our freedom ARE overseas, as the 9/11 attacks have made all..."

Hmmm. There are extremists and extremists. I'll wait until we get back to the original topic.


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Doha 12 (other topics)

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Jess Welsby (other topics)