How Do I Keep My PC Safe?

Backups

August 17, 2016
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Sooner or later, you will lose the data on your PC.     Either you accidentally delete something (most common), the PC hardware fails (occasionally), or ransomware will get you despite your best efforts (hasn’t happened to anybody I know yet). What would you do if a thief stole your PC today?       Regular backups are essential ! There […]

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Facebook False Friends

May 27, 2016
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A Fake Friend If you get a Facebook ‘Friend Request’ from somebody that’s already your friend, it’s a SCAM! Before doing anything with the email, check Facebook and confirm you are already friends.  If so, the email is just from a scammer trying to get to your profile (because your friends can see your stuff). How […]

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Safe Searching

April 9, 2016
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This looks pretty evil doesn’t it?   At first glance, it looks like something on your system ‘crashed’.  But fortunately all  you have to do is call a ‘Microsoft Certified Technician’ to resolve it! It’s all a ‘Scare-ware’ scam, of course.   Somehow you just got to an evil webpage — it’s easy to do […]

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Ring of Steel

February 24, 2014
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Protecting your computer is really a lot like protecting your home. Lock the Door The first step of home protection is making sure existing locks work.  If the front door lock is broken, then the rest of the security plan doesn’t work that well. For your computer, that means ‘locking down’ the programs on your […]

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Gotcha !

December 27, 2012
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I got a call this week that malware had infected one of our PCs.  That’s a pretty rare event, so I connected to it to see for myself. It looks like a Trojan, hacking tools and some  adware.  I clicked ‘Clean computer’.   And just like that, the ‘computer guy’ fell for malware!   You see, […]

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Predicting the Future

November 1, 2012
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Your garage will burn down soon Let’s say that ‘destiny’ requires that your garage burn down this weekend.   The Fire Department will arrive quickly, and put out the blaze, and save what they can.  But your car and those prize winning flowers you have been nursing for years are beyond saving. What if mid-week the […]

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Fire in the Hole !

April 13, 2012
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In real buildings, a ‘Firewall’ is just that – a wall that stops fire from spreading. When you connect your PC to the internet, you need something similar.    Without some kind of firewall, malicious programs can locate and infect your PC – without you doing a thing.  It happens in about 5 minutes on average! […]

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Malware (a.k.a. the Common Cold)

April 2, 2012
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Computers are great tools because they can run all kinds of programs.  But like humans, they can sometimes ‘catch a cold’ – acquire a program that you don’t want.   Unwanted programs are called malware (“malicious software”), and include viruses, trojans, adware, spyware, and lots more. So what’s the doctor’s advice for keeping your PC healthy […]

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1.21 Gigawatts. Great Scott!

March 28, 2012
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In ‘Back to the Future’, Dr. Emmett Brown needs a lot of energy to charge up his time machine – and he gets it from a lightning bolt in a storm.     While really helpful for time machines, electrical surges are really not helpful for computers (and most other electronics like your expensive TV set). To […]

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