Online trust misplaced

Who can you trust online?

In a recent expose, Vice, a prominent online lifestyle and technology magazine, showed that antivirus company Avast was collecting and selling all of its free users’ web browsing data to other companies such as Microsoft, Google and many others.

This means that the company had basically unlimited access to information about your online life.

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Upgrade to Win10 for zilch

Microsoft discontinues support for Windows 7 in January 2020, meaning that it will be unsafe to use on the internet due to a lack of security updates.

It’s unfortunate as many, including me, prefer Windows 7 to Windows 8 or 10, but there are worse problems in the world presently.

At this point you’ve got two choices if you’re on Windows 7: upgrade your computer to Windows 10 or buy a new computer with Windows 10 on it.

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Freeware to the rescue

It occurred to me today that the number of additional pieces of software I use in Windows is quite staggering.

I rarely, if ever, use the built-in Windows apps (asides from maybe Calculator), as there’s almost always something better in the freeware world.

For those of you who don’t know, ‘freeware’ means free software, of which there is a ton on the Windows platform.

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Keep credit cards safe online

Things are tough online now – a business can get hacked and lose millions of customers’ details to hackers.

Unfortunately those details sometimes include credit cards.

There is also an underground industry of stolen credit card details, often funding illicit “deal” websites like G2A (a computer game re-seller) or other seedier sites.

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Back up before de-clutter

So, it’s that time of year again, and you’re ready to get rid of some of that spring clutter. Of course you are.

But, before you go deleting all the things you think you don’t need, maybe you should invest some time in installing precautions, in case you get it wrong.

For the fact is, we’re all fallible, we make mistakes, that’s what being human is about. So with that in mind, I’m going to talk to you about backing up.

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Passwords that rule

If I had $5 for every time I retrieved or reset someone’s password when they’d forgotten it or hadn’t written it down I’d have … well, about the same amount of money I have now.

It can take anywhere between one and ten minutes to get a password back depending on what’s required and the account in question.

One problem for many users is that computers can confuse you a bit by remembering your passwords for you.

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Beware computer scams

A rising number of people have reported random calls from someone with a foreign accent, typically Indian or American, telling them they’ve got a security or other kind of issue with their computer.

This is obviously a scam and it’s worth knowing how it works.

It starts with that call, sometimes bounced through a NZ landline number, and the suggestion that there’s a problem with your computer.

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