Can you believe we may see 80 degrees by Monday? Life isn't fair...We here in Oregon enjoy the best environment of the country while the East Coast keeps getting hit with snow. Let's see if we can experience great computing too!
Here are some topics we will be covering in this edition :
- Windows 10 is Coming!!!
- Another Visa Scam
- Need to Share or Backup Files?
- Try out "WhoDoYou"
- A Delicate Subject...
Windows 10 is coming !!!
Microsoft has recently announced it will be providing their new Windows 10 operating system "Free of Charge" this summer, to everyone who has Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1. It is not yet clear how it will upgrade Windows 7.
For those running Windows 7 you will need to run a free Windows 10 compatibility utility, to determine your computer's ability to successfully upgrade to Windows 10. In most cases there will be no problem doing so.
Once you get the compatibility report, you can decide what you want to keep on your PC. You won't be able to keep programs and settings when you upgrade. Be sure to locate your original program installation discs or purchase confirmation emails if you bought programs online. You'll need these to reinstall your programs after you upgrade to Windows 10—this includes, for example, Microsoft Office, Apache OpenOffice, Quicken, Quickbooks, and Adobe programs. It's also a good idea to back up your files at this time, too.
Because the improvements in Windows 10 are so signficant and because of the major transition Microsoft is making in its Windows Operating System I'm likely going to be recommending to everyone who has Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 to take the free upgrade to Windows 10. Most IT Technicians and Consultants worldwide appear to be giving Windows 10 a strong thumbs up signal and my personal use of it confirms their optimism as well, so all in all it is a great opportunity.
One thing you need to consider though...is that once the upgrade has been made it will not be possible to return to an earlier version of Windows without wiping your hard drive and reinstalling the previous version. In other words, if you end up not liking Windows 10 it will be a much more involved process to return to the previous version than it was to upgrade to Windows 10. For this reason I'm going to recommend you perform independant research on Windows 10 yourself to see if you will be comfortable with making the switch, keeping in mind that any change will have a learning curve attached to it. I'll need you to take full responsibility for the upgrade and not just rely on my strong confidence in it.
In most cases I believe you are going to want me to assist you in the upgrade process, as it will present you with options and approaches that may press you beyond your comfort zones. I think you can anticipate about an hour and half to two hours of tech time for me to complete the upgrade and reinstall any programs you need installed.
Another Visa scam...:
This is a heads up for everyone regarding the latest in Visa fraud.
Royal Bank received this communication about the newest scam.This is happening in the Midwest right now and moving across the country.
This one is pretty slick, since they provide YOU with all the information, except the one piece they want.
Note, the callers do not ask for your card number; they already have it.This information is worth reading.
By understanding how the VISA & MasterCard telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared to protect yourself.
The scam works like this:
Person calling says - 'This is (name) and I'm calling from the Security and Fraud Department at VISA.
My Badge number is 12460, your card has been flagged for an unusual purchase pattern, and I'm calling to verify.
This would be on your VISA card which was issued by (name of bank). Did you purchase an Anti-Telemarketing Device for $497.99 from a marketing company based in Arizona?'
When you say 'No', the caller continues with, 'Then we will be issuing a credit to your account. This is a company we have been watching, and the charges range from $297 to $497, just under the $500 purchase pattern that flags most cards. Before your next statement, the credit will be sent to (gives you your address). Is that correct?'
You say 'yes'.
The caller continues - 'I will be starting a Fraud Investigation. If you have any questions, you should call the 1- 800 number listed on the back of your card (1-800-VISA) and ask for Security. You will need to refer to this Control Number.
The caller then gives you a 6 digit number. 'Do you need me to read it again?'
Here's the IMPORTANT part on how the scam works - The caller then says, 'I need to verify you are in possession of your card'. He'll ask you to 'turn your card over and look for some numbers'. There are 7 numbers; the first 4 are part of your card number, the last 3 are the Security Numbers that verify you are the possessor of the card. These are the numbers you sometimes use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. The caller will ask you to read the last 3 numbers to him. After you tell the caller the 3 numbers, he'll say, 'That is correct, I just needed to verify that the card has not been lost or stolen, and that you still have your card. Do you have any other questions?'
After you say no, the caller then thanks you and states, 'Don't hesitate to call back if you do', and hangs up.
You actually say very little, and they never ask for or tell you the card number.
But, if after you are called, you call back within 20 minutes to ask a question, you will be glad you did! The REAL VISA Security Department will tell you it was a scam and in the last 15 minutes a new purchase of $497.99 was charged to our card.
You would then make a real fraud report and close the VISA account. VISA would then reissue you a new number.
What the Scammer wants is the 3-digit PIN number on the back of the card. Don't give it to them. Instead, tell them you'll call VISA or Master Card directly for verification of their conversation.
The real VISA will tell you that they will never ask for anything on the card, as they already know the information, since they issued the card!
If you give the Scammer your 3 Digit PIN Number, you think you're receiving a credit. However, by the time you get your statement you'll see charges for purchases you didn't make, and by then it's almost too late and/or more difficult to actually file a fraud report.
It appears that this is a very active scam, and evidently quite successful...
Pass this on to all your family and friends. _______________
Do you need to Share Files or Backup a few important files?
If you ever desire to share files with other friends or family members, or save some important documents in a safe cloud environment, Dropbox is still one of the easiest ways to get 2 gigabytes of free space. Here's a link you can use to sign up for Dropbox: Invite people to try Dropbox and get more space. Use this link: click here
I've used Dropbox for years and I find it very easy to use and a great resource.
Try Out "WhoDoYou"...
There is a new online Business Referral Service called "WhoDoYou" (short for "who do you use") and I'm listed on their site as a local "Computer Repair" service in the Eagle Creek area.
The way it works is that you type in the kind of service you are interested in...in my case you'd type "Computer Service", and they will provide you with companies in your area that provide that service and referrals from others who have used their services and what kind of a job they did.
This is a great way for you to find reputable service providers with first hand referrals from real people in your area.
I'd be honored to have your referral-recommendation if you were willing to take a moment to provide a brief recommendation. On the left side of the page is a tab titled "Feedback", or towards the bottom you will find "Review this provider" if you click there it will give you an opportunity to say a few words.
Here is the site where you could make such a recommendation. Thanks so much!
I'm currently listed in 1st position for the Eagle Creek area...your recommendations will help me stay in first position. You guys are the best!
A Delicate but Important Subject...
I'm going to broach a very delicate issue, but it is a topic long overdue for me to address with all my clients. It has to do with you passing away prematurely and all the passwords you may have set to all your personal accounts, business accounts, banking accounts, investment accounts, and email accounts. Does anyone outside of yourself and your spouse have all this information?
I'm certainly not about to suggest you trust me with that information, but does your Executor, or a close family member not living in your home have all this information?
If you were to suddenly pass away surely you would want all of those you intend to inheret your assets to be able to access those quickly, easily, and without going through piles of red tape with the Law and the Government.
For this reason I'm encouraging you to develop a clear plan now, if you haven't already. What I have done is to appoint one person as the Executor of my estate and I have placed all this important information on one document and put it in my Bank's safe deposit box and given my Executor the authority to unlock that box at my and my wife's untimely death. I have a clear will written out, and notorized, and an Advance Directive for my care should I be incapacitated and not expected to survive.
I want it to be as easy as possible for my inheritors to liquidate my assets and distribute them among themselves in the easiest and quickest way possible, especially given the pain they will be going through at my untimely death.
I don't want to have them having to hire some forensic specialist to try to figure out what my account passwords are when what they most need to do is resolve my estate and get on with their lives.
I can suggest programs for you to install on your computer, into which you can record all your accounts and passwords, and help you get started in preparing all that information.
Here are three that are worthy of consideration:
1. Keeper Security - www.keepersecurity.com
2. Dashlane - www.dashlane.com
3. KeePass - http://keepass.info/
When you have concluded that work I suggest you place it securely in a Bank Safe Deposit Box. Please let me know if I can be of assistance, and please do not ask me to be privy to any of the names of those accounts, or passwords and usernames. That could cause unnecessary anxiety for your remaining family members to think anyone but them had that delicate information.
Best of success to you in all your computing!
I’m here to assist you when you need it. As just a reminder... my onsite residential fee is $45 per hour and for the commercial setting it is $55 per hour and will continue through the month of March. For those times when working remotely with your computer over the Internet is a good option then the cost savings to you are substantial since I only need to charge on a "15 minute" increment instead of the full hour fee for an onsite visit. This means just $12 per 15 minutes. Once again...for any clients you send my way, who use my services for an hour or more, I'd be happy to credit you with $12 of free computer service at your next call. Do let me know if you send folks my way and I'll keep notes on that as a credit for my next visit to you, and don't feel embarrassed to remind me you would like that credit when I visit.
Thanks so much!
Your Computer Technician