Beware Of The Social Security Email Scam — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-10)

March 7, 2016

Beware Of The Social Security Email Scam – I felt this important enough to “pass it on” and post about the most recent Social Security Email Scam where you receive a phlishing email that leads you to believe it is from the Social Security Administration. I first read about this on the Comsumer Reports website.

Here is what Consumer Reports had to say about this scam:

This Social Security email is a classic phishing ploy, a form of identity theft in which hackers use fraudulent websites and fake emails to attempt to steal your personal data, especially passwords and credit card information. Clicking on the link may open your computer to malware, such as viruses and spyware. Or the link might send you to a spoof site—a copycat version of the Social Security Administration’s site—to trick you into entering your personal information, including your Social Security number [source: Consumer Reports]

It is important to report all questionable emails to the FTC and to the organization impersonated in the email. You can initiate a scam report at the FTC Complaint Assistant web site by — CLICKING HERE .

How problematic are scams, such as this? I encourage you to visit the FTC’s Scam Alert page to see the multiple listing of “known” scams — CLICK HERE . What I find is that the scammers will follow similar patterns in their scams by using clever schemes to get people to send money or give out personal information. I have found that the scammers prey on the elderly, who came from a trusting generation. Always, with most things in life these days, “believe nothing and verify everything”.

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TCAT Shelbyville Blogs Windows 10 Update Information – Thank goodness I follow the TCAT Shelbyville blog. I just learned this past week, from their site, that Microsoft has unleashed and update that is quite large in size (+500 mb). These large updates affect those who are on limited bandwidth’s (such as a satellite connection); and, they are wondering why they are mysteriously exceeding their bandwidth limitations. Actually, looking at what this update consists of, they should have called it an upgrade (LOL)…  I encourage you to visit the TCAT Shelbyville Technical Blog to learn more… Again, to see detailed information about Windows 10 Updates, you can visit Microsoft’s new site that provides a history on these updates (click here)…

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My Favorite Third Party Windows Task ManagerAnVir Task Manager FREE is the task manager that I use and carry in my tech toolbox (a portable version is available, as well as the full install version). If you look at the graphic below, you will see that this task manager is like a swiss utility knife. I have included this program on the download’s page under the software and portable apps swarms.

AnVir Task Manager FREE

 AnVir Task Manager is a swiss knife

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A Dual-Pane Tree View File Explorer For Android – I recently switched over from ES File Explorer to X-plore File Manager and have not regretted it since. Don’t get me wrong, ES File Explorer is an excellent file manager, as well; however the big “main” feature I like about X-plore is the dual-pane tree view. This feature allows you to toggle from one file location to another, making file management faster (and easier). X-plore, like ES File Explorer, is loaded with all the features you would need for an android based application. I highly recommend X-plore…

X-plore File Manager

 X-plore File Manager- screenshot

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A SanDisk Flash Drive With Dual Micro-USB and USB 3.0 Connectors – With the dual connections, the SanDisk Ultra 64GB USB 3.0 OTG Flash Drive With micro USB connector For Android Mobile Devices gives you the luxury of connecting this drive to your Windows OS based computer and to your Android OS based phone (or tablet).

SanDisk Ultra 64GB USB 3.0 OTG Flash Drive
With micro USB connector For Android Mobile Devices

SanDisk Dual USB

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FREE Kapersky Security Tools — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-09)

February 29, 2016

FREE Kapersky Security Tools – Kaspersky Lab is world renown for its’ security products, such as anti-virus, anti-malware and firewall applications, in addition to security systems designed for small business, corporations and large enterprises.

Kaspersky Lab

In addition to their fine security applications, they also have a page setup — CLICK HERE — where you can download a variety of FREE security tools that they have put together that you may be interested in:

Kaspersky Software Updater – Keep your PC software up-to-date and secure. The tool automatically gives you a list of new updates, and applies only those ones you select.

Kaspersky Password Manager – Securely store your passwords & sync them across PC, Mac, iPhone & iPad and Android devices – for safer access to accounts, apps & websites.

Kaspersky Cleaner (link is direct file dowloand) – Make your PC run smoothly & effectively, by cleaning it from junk files & temporary items – and tune up your digital privacy.

Kaspersky Safe Kids – Protect your kids from digital dangers – so they can enjoy and learn more from the digital world.

Kaspersky Security Scan – Scan your PC for malware that may be hidden on it. Get a detailed security status report – plus tips on improving your PC protection.

Kaspersky Rescue Disk (link is direct file download) – Check and cure your computer when it is critically infected and it is impossible to boot the operating system.

Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool  (link is direct file download)- Get quick help for your PC. Download an efficient tool to clean up your computer from viruses, Trojans, malware, adware and more.

Kaspersky Internet Security – (Multi-Device) Get the one-license solution that delivers premium protection for your money, kids, privacy and more on PC, Mac and Mobile.

My Kaspersky – Remotely manage the security of all your devices from a simple web portal – plus get access to free Kaspersky security services.

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MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

Craigslist On Steroids – I have been trying to pay more attention to some of the Windows Store apps (for Windows 8.1 and 10) and hope to feature some of the apps that I think are worth installing. One of the first apps I installed (since I am a Craigslist user) was CPlus for Craigslist. If you are a Craigslist user, I encourage you to definitely take a look at this app. Makes browsing Craigslist a much more enjoyable and streamlined (faster) experience.

CPlus for Craigslist

Screenshot: Main Page

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How To Create A Slide To Shutdown Shortcut In Windows 10 – The Windows Club has given us a “how to” Create A Slide To Shutdown Shortcut In Windows 10. Once you follow their instructions, simply click on the shortcut and the lock screen will roll half way down the screen. When it stops, simply take your mouse and drag it to the bottom edge of the screen and your computer will commence to shutdown. You can back out of this, if you decide to not pull down the lock screen (from the halfway point), by hitting the “esc” key on your keyboard (at which point the lock down screen will roll back to the top).  To add to this, I right clicked the shortcut I added and selected a different icon (such as the shutdown icon). I then pinned the shortcut to my taskbar. This shortcut makes shutting down your PC much easier…

To add to this, I right clicked the shortcut I created and selected a different icon (such as the shutdown icon). I then pinned the shortcut to my taskbar. This shortcut makes shutting down your PC much easier…

Create A Slide To Shutdown Shortcut In Windows 10

Create Slide To Shutdown shortcut

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An Ultrasmall Highspeed USB 3.0 Flash Drive That’s Ideal For Notebooks – Last year I installed a 128 GB SSD drive in my old notebook computer. To compliment that drive, I am looking to get one of these small USB low profile drives to give me more space (to store personal files). Right now my radar has me looking at the SanDisk Ultra Fit 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive

SanDisk Ultra Fit 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive

SanDisk Ultra Fit 128 GB

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Don’t Throw Away That Old Computer. Turn It Into A Chromebook (sort of) — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-08)

February 22, 2016

Don’t Throw Away That Old Computer. Turn It Into A Chromebook (sort of) – Neverware, a New York City startup, is in the business of taking old computers and refurbishing them into “Chromebooks” (sort of). Actually you could call them Chromiumbooks, due they use a modified version of Chromium (instead of Google Chrome) that will work on most hardware. The difference between Chromium and Chrome are undistinguishable. The good about this is that the software to convert that old computer to a Chromebook or to create a dual-boot system, is free to individual users. If you are interested in giving this a try, the download and instructions can be found by HERE.

Neverware

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MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

Sandbox Your Web Browser (or any application) With SHADE Sandbox – Most everyone that is into computers is familiar with Sandboxie and its’ isolation technology. Well, there is another competitive option out there called “SHADE Sandbox. SHADE Sandbox is an alternative for antivirus and a tool for virtualization. It locally virtualizes applications (i.e. internet browsers) and locks all incoming internet files and possible viruses in its safe virtual environment – a “sandbox”, keeping them isolated from the Operating System to maintain it clean from malware.

SHADE Sandbox

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An Ultimate Tool For Customizing Windows (including Windows 10)  – If you are into customizing the look of Windows to meet your personal taste, then take a look at CustomizerGod.

 CustomizerGod

CustomizerGod in Windows 8.1

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An Android App To Listen To Your News Websites, Online Magazines, RSS Feeds and Blogs – The Android app, called Play News is a nice app that allows you to listen to (read aloud) news, magazines and your selected web content on your phone (or tablet). You can also add to a playlist inbox articles, news, etc… of your choice.  A nice addition to this app is the Google Chrome extension, called Play News: Listen Later, that gives you the ability to add items to your playlist that can be listened to later (for example in your car using full bluetooth support).

Play News

 PlayNews: Listen to news sites- screenshot

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Speaking Of Chromebooks – Checkout the Newest Samsung 11.6-Inch Chromebook 2, featuring: the Intel Dual-Core Celeron N2840 2.16GHz, 2GB RAM, 16GB SSD, 11.6″ HD Display 1366 x 768, Intel® HD Graphics, HD Webcam, Bluetooth, HDMI, 802.11ac, Chrome OS…

Newest Samsung 11.6-Inch Chromebook 2

Newest Samsung 11.6-Inch Chromebook 2 (Intel Dual-Core Celeron N2840 2.16GHz, 2GB RAM, 16GB SSD, 11.6" HD Display 1366 x 768, Intel® HD Graphics, HD Webcam, Bluetooth, HDMI, 802.11ac, Chrome OS)

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Where To Get Windows 10 Update Details — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-07)

February 15, 2016

Where To Get Windows 10 Update Details – Windows 10, like all previous Windows versions, is recipient to numerous updates that are circulated by Microsoft. These updates are necessary to improve the operating system and keep our computers safe. Microsoft, this past week, beginning with the February 9th update, announced that they have launched a web site detailing the contents of the Windows 10 updates. The site will regularly refresh, as new updates are released. According to Microsoft, “You’ll see a summary of important product developments included in each update, with links to more details”…  If you are someone who is into troubleshooting computer problems, knowing where and how to get to this site may be helpful. I don’t know about you; but, I have seen updates go awry and actually cause problems. Knowing the contents of these updates will be a helpful in solving these problems. To get to the Windows 10 Update History web site — CLICK HERE.

Windows 10 Update History

win10

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MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

A NEW Gmail Feature To Make Email Safer – When using Gmail, if you receive a message from, or are about to send a message to, someone whose email service doesn’t support TLS encryption, you’ll see a broken lock icon in the message. What this is basically telling you is that the email, while in transit, is not encrypted and if intercepted could be read. To learn more about this feature, visit the Official Gmail Blog.

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Microsoft Garage – The Outlet For Experimental Projects – One of my passions is software (especially FREE software). As a matter of fact; trying, testing, and learning about software paved my way into information technology (as a hobby and career). If you are like me and love software (and apps), make sure you check out Microsoft Garage where you will find Workbench Projects (with many being, not only Windows based, but Apple and Android based).

Microsoft Garage

Creating a laser etched and lit rapid prototype in the Makers Garage.

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Computer Wizard

(courtesy of The Meta Picture)

cool-computer-genius-quote

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Farbar Tools To Fight Malware – Farbar is a malware fighter who helps people with malware removal on a variety of security forums.  He has incorporated his own experience and other malware fighters into some useful tools to assist helpers in removing malware. 

Farbar Tools

@

Bleeping Computer

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A Gravity Defying Levitating Bluetooth Speaker – The ICEORB Portable Wireless Floating Bluetooth Speaker is one of the Amazon Launchpad products that is a floating Speaker Orb spinning above a magnetic base… Am I buying one of these?  No, but this is pretty cool…

ICEORB Portable Wireless Floating Bluetooth Speaker

ICEORB Portable Wireless Floating Bluetooth Speaker

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Need Help With Windows 10? — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-06)

February 8, 2016

Need Help With Windows 10? – If you are a newcomer to Windows 10 (or computers) and you need help with Windows 10, you will find on the Microsoft site itself (which is quite large) a section of the site totally devoted to getting help with Windows 10. Many of the answers you may be seeking can be found here — and, if that is of no help you can go so far as to actually talk or chat with someone from Microsoft to get assistance. I personally have never had to go this route; but, I do think it is helpful that the home-based computer user know that these options are available; especially, that you can talk to someone. Also, to my readers, if you know of any third party Windows 10 help sites available, please feel free to share this information in the comments section.

Windows 10 Help

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MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

Virus and Malware Removal Tools – TCAT Shelbyville’s Technical Blog recently pointed out to us that “Often we remember Malwarebytes, Adwcleaner, ComboFix, RKill , Junkware Removal Tool (JRT) or Adware Removal Tool/TSA and forget about tools offered by Anti-virus software manufacturers”…  I encourage you to visit their site to see what those other tools are — CLICK HERE

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Two Guys One Ticket – This is an off-topic video, but is a hack of sorts where two guys (more or less as a challenge) try to get into a movie theatre with one ticket. Appeared to take a lot of work, strength (and personal closeness), but they pulled it off.

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I Am About To Lose A 100 Gigs Of Online Storage – For the past several years I have managed to accumulate 100 GBs of FREE online storage space at Copy.com (by having other people sign up for their service). Well, effective May 1, 2016, Copy and CudaDrive services will be discontinued (after 4+ years of service)… Fortunately, in my case, this is no sweat off my back; due I do not keep all my eggs in one basket. Yes, I am going to miss that 100 gigs; but, this is a good example (or lesson) where we should never completely depend on cloud based services. Personally, when it comes to the important files, I keep a local backup and store another away from my residence.

Copy and CudaDrive services will be discontinued  

Copy ©

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All-In-One Design Tool For Everyone (for FREE) – If you do not have PicPick installed on your computer, then you are missing out on some very good screen capturing and editing software. PicPick is FREE for personal use (not FREE for commerical use). You can do a full install or use it as a portable app… PicPick is full-featured screen capture tool, Intuitive image editor, color picker, color palette, pixel-ruler, protractor, crosshair, whiteboard and more.

PicPick

PicPick

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Bluetooth Keyboard That Works With Your PC, Android, iOS Smartphones & Tablets – I found this keyboard quite interesting and currently have it on my wishlist for my tablet.  It is the Jelly Comb Bluetooth 3.0 Keyboard.  This keyboard is unique in that it works with your PC, Android, or Smartphones & Tablets.  It features a 96 Keys Keyboard with Multi Touch Track Pad; Silicone Rubber Docking Stand (or slot); Wireless Bluetooth 3.0 for fast pairing and wide range connectivity of up to 33 feet (10 meters) and a Built-in Battery (Charge 2 hours and you can use it for months. Simply plug the keyboard to a USB and start charging.). The only downfall that I am seeing with this is that it does not come with a micro USB charging cable (which are readily available a dime a dozen)… 

Jelly Comb Bluetooth 3.0 Keyboard

Jelly Comb Keyboard

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Is VeraCrypt The Reincarnation of TrueCrypt??? — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-05)

February 1, 2016

Is VeraCrypt The Reincarnation of TrueCrypt??? – Nearly everyone in the world of tech has heard of TrueCrypt. TrueCrypt was an open source-available freeware utility used for on-the-fly encryption (OTFE). If you notice I said “was”. TrueCrypt’s life was an approximate 10 year lifespan from 2004 to 2014. In 2014 TrueCrypt abruptly shutdown development and many rumors have persisted since that time, as to “why”. As a result, many people became skeptical about the security of TrueCrypt. Well fret no more…  I noticed at Gizmo’s Freeware site (one of my favorite sites) that TrueCrypt has been reincarnated into VeraCrypt. Gizmo’s has an article posted, TrueCrypt Is Dead. Long Live VeraCrypt! that I encourage you to read.

VeraCrypt

VeraCrypt picks up from where TrueCrypt left and it adds enhanced security to the algorithms used for system and partitions encryption making it immune to new developments in brute-force attacks.

VeraCrypt also solves many vulnerabilities and security issues found in TrueCrypt. It can load TrueCrypt volume and it offers the possibility to convert TrueCrypt containers and non-system partitions to VeraCrypt format.

To learn how to use Veracrypt — CLICK HERE — for a beginner’s tutorial.

MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

SpyDetectFree – Free Spyware Detector – Here is a FREE, easy to run, spyware detector called SpyDetectFree. It is a “one click” tool mainly intended for detecting processes that may indicate that your keystrokes are being recorded and/or there is the presence of spyware on your computer. SpyDetectFree does not require installation. Simply download and run.

SpyDetectFree

SpyDetectFree

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A Tutorial On Three Ways To View The WiFi Password On Your Windows 10 PC – You need to put ILoveFreeSoftware’s tutorial on “How To View WiFi Password on Windows 10 PC” in your tech toolbox files. Visit the site to learn how to: (1) View Windows 10 Wifi Password via Network and Sharing Center; (2) See Wifi Password on Windows 10 via Command Prompt; and, (3) Use Free WirelessKeyView Software for Windows 10 To View Wifi Password…

How To View WiFi Password on Windows 10 PC

enable show characters option to reveal the password

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Some Simple “FREE” Programs To Try – I don’t know what it is, but I have always had a fancy toward the small software programs that are developed for specific purposes. Many of these turn out to be actually very good. Reflected below are four that I ventured across this week that were new to me and is a worth a try:

WinBurner – Free Simple Complete Burning Suite

Tray Radio

OneWaySynchronize

OneWaySynchronize screenshot

SSuite Envelope Printer

Screenshot of SSuite - Envelope Printer

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Anker® Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Mouse with 6 Buttons – If you are looking for a mouse, you will not beat the price (or customers reviews) on the Anker® Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Mouse with 6 Buttons.

Anker® Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Mouse

Anker Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Mouse

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Is 123456 A Good Password? — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-04)

January 25, 2016

Is 123456 A Good Password? – Apparently many people think that it is. The password “123456” once again reigns as the most commonly used password, as it has since SplashData’s first list in 2011, demonstrating how people’s choices for passwords remain consistently risky. The second most risky password used is; you got it, is the word “password”. To see a listing of the worst passwords for 2015 — CLICK HERE… The whole purpose of this annual publishing of bad passwords is to encourage “we the people” to use stronger passwords in an effort to protect our personal data and to improve internet security.

Worst Passwords

One of the options that I use to protect myself, due to the numerous passwords that I use, is to use a password manager. The password manager that I use and strongly endorse is the S10 Password Vault which is available as a Windows install, portable app (on USB Drive), iPhone app, iPad app, and Android app. Many folks have a tendency to use one of the cloud-based password managers; however, I personally just do not feel comfortable with piping the passwords to my personal accounts into the cloud and not knowing (for absolutely sure) that it will always remain protected. With S10 Password Vault, I at least feel I have some level of control.

MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF

How To Create A Bookmark For The Download List In Google Chrome – Open chrome://downloads in your browser. Click the star next to the link and then save it on your bookmarks bar. You can adjust the name of the shortcut to whatever you desire..

Google Chrome

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If You Have Windows 10 And Love Jigsaw Puzzles – Check out Magic Jigsaw Puzzles, a Windows app, that has some FREEBIE options built into it, as well as paid options. Featuring: Lot’s of  beautiful, high-definition puzzles; Downloadable content (including FREE puzzles); Constantly updated pictures gallery; 4 levels of difficulty (up to 280 pieces); Move pieces in groups; Rotation mode for a greater challenge; Create your own puzzles from your pictures; New special picture every day; Work on more than one puzzle at a time and see your progress; Easy-to-operate control and Easy preview. After installing and trying it out, I found there were some ads and a few freebie puzzles. There was an option to buy into a package for $9.99 that makes the ads go away and opens up many options. Nice jigsaw puzzle software (even for $10)…

Magic Jigsaw Puzzles

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Synchronize Your Folders and Drives In A Quick and Easy Way – I have been testing various FREE backup and synchronization software. One that is currently on my computer now that is leading the pack is Synchredible. The standard version is free for private purposes. What I really like about Synchredible is that it has a built in wizard that will walk you through configuring your sync jobs. Once these jobs are setup, performing synchronized backups is as easy as clicking a button.

Synchredible

Synchredible

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A “News Spread” Like No OtherCLICK HERE to see Newsola… I have featured Newsola on here before and decided to throw it out there at you again. Really neat way that the news is presented. You can set Newsola up so that it will auto refresh on a regular basis. Nice cloud based app that you can keep up on the screen when your computer is idle that will keep you up to date on the latest news.

Newsola 

Newsola

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Need A Router? Check This One Out – The TP-LINK TL-WR841N Wireless N300 Home Router is one of those routers I am seeing on Amazon that is inexpensive, but has a great number of customer reviews. At the time of this posting, this router was at the $20 mark.

TP-LINK TL-WR841N Wireless N300 Home Router

TP-Link Router

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