security

Around The World In 80 Taps: Google Pay, Apple Pay, And Contactless Payments

NFC mobile phone payment

I never used a credit card in Australia. I bought coffee and sandwiches and souvenirs and dinners and clothing, but I never pulled out my wallet. I never used cash, either.

I tapped.

You should tap.

Australian merchants accept mobile payments with Google Pay or Apple Pay for almost every transaction. […] continued

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Rules For Computer And Online Safety 2018

Computer and online safety 2018 - Stop, Think, Act

These are the rules for computer and online safety in 2018. You can download a copy here.

You will be safe if you are cautious. Stop and think before you click on links, before you call unfamiliar phone numbers, before you install programs, and before you fill in passwords.  Only your vigilance will protect you against bad guys. […] continued

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Meltdown & Spectre: What You Need To Know About Intel’s Security Disaster

Meltdown & Spectre - Intel's security disaster

Nearly every modern processor has security flaws that potentially could allow hackers to steal data from any computer or server. The two related problems, code-named Meltdown and Spectre, have the technology industry in a tizzy and spilled over to the mainsteam press a few days ago. They are difficult to fix and alarming to read about. […] continued

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The 2017 Bruceb News Year In Review

The 2017 Bruceb News Year In Review

A year ago I wrote this prediction: “The word of the year for 2017 is “chaos.” Write it down, seal it in an envelope, open it up a year from now and see if I got it right.”

I think I get full marks. (Although Dictionary.com chose “complicit” as the word of the year, which has a certain snarky charm.)

We are in a transitional time in technology, with a handful of very large companies – Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft – accumulating power and wealth and dominating the landscape. […] continued

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Apple’s Security Disaster And What It Means For A Golden Key

Apple's security disaster

On Tuesday, the word spread that Apple’s latest release of its operating system for Mac computers, MacOS High Sierra, had a terrible, dangerous problem. Anyone could sit down at any Mac computer and in seconds log in to an administrator account, with full permission to install programs, change passwords, read files – to do anything to the computer. […] continued

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Security Warning: Do Not Click On Links In Email Messages!

Do not click on links in email messages!

Do not click on links in email messages unless you are 100% certain they lead somewhere you want to go.

We are being assaulted by a torrent of phony email messages from criminals. The messages look legitimate. The links lead to fake websites that will try to steal your password or credit card number. […] continued

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Do Not Call The 800 Number!

Do not call the 800 number for "tech support"!

(This is a slightly modified version of an article originally published on March 2, 2016. Phony warnings about viruses continue to be the most common online scam in 2017.)

If your computer displays a message while you are browsing the Internet claiming that you have been hacked or infected with a virus, it is a lie by criminals. […] continued

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The Case Of The Missing Eye

Security - the case of the missing eye

Let’s track down a bad guy. Looking through the clues will help you catch the next criminal that tries to trick you with a malicious email message.

I received many reports last week of phony messages that appeared to be from Microsoft, Paypal, and others. There are some examples below. One of them was clever in an interesting way that will remind you of how careful you need to be. […] continued

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It’s Time To Improve Your Passwords! Scary Stories About The Bad Guys

password-petname

The bad guys aren’t kidding around. They’re after you. Some day soon you will be walking down the street and a 400 pound hacker will galumph out and make a scary face and shout, “Give me all the passwords in your wallet!” and stomp off cackling and steal all your money from his couch. […] continued

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Ransomware And Other Scary Monsters

Ransomware and other scary monsters

The chances are good that you weren’t affected by the ransomware attack that began Friday and is still in progress around the world. In fact, it’s very likely that it’s not a threat to you, even if you click on its evil link. I’ll tell you some of the reasons for that. […] continued

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How To Close A Hijacked Web Browser

Do not call the 800 number!

If your computer displays a message while you are browsing the Internet claiming that you have been hacked or infected with a virus, it is a lie by criminals.

Your computer is not infected with anything and you did nothing wrong.

Do not call the 800 number for “tech support.”

You are calling criminals who will lie to you. […] continued

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Gazing Into The Abyss: Republicans Are Selling Out Your Privacy

Gazing into the abyss - Republicans are selling out your privacy

When you think about the future, you may start to suffer from “abyss gaze,” the depression that settles in when you realize that we’re all doomed. Warren Ellis coined the term in a novella named “Normal,” which tells the story of futurists who suffer nervous breakdowns after discovering that there is no hope for humanity as a result of the trends in whatever area they study. […] continued

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Security Warning: Be Suspicious Of Everything (Including Fonts)

Chrome malware - "HoeflerText font wasn't found"

If you see the above message – “The HoeflerText font wasn’t found” – it is a lie. If you click on the “Update” button and run the executable named “Chrome_font.exe” or “Chrome Font v7.5.1.exe”, you will install malware on your computer, most likely ransomware that could take down your entire company. […] continued

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Rules For Computer And Online Safety 2017

Paranoia is your best defense on your computer and online

Email & online security     |     Computers     |     Phones & tablets

Antivirus programs     |     Adware

Passwords     |     Phone scams     |     Wire transfers

These are the rules for computer and online safety in 2017. You can download a copy here.

We are required to be paranoid and vigilant. Bad guys are coming up with inventive and sophisticated ways to fool us in email messages, on the phone, and on the web. […] continued

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The 2016 Bruceb News Year In Review

The 2016 Bruceb News Year In Review

 

Did you miss any Bruceb News articles in 2016? Maybe they slipped out of sight in your Inbox. Fun fact: when I look over my clients’ shoulders, I see that many of them file my articles in folders that have whimsical names like “Deleted Items” and “Junk Mail.” Such impish senses of humor! […] continued

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