Upstarts interview Resources.

Thanks to Kelly and the crew on @upstarts for the opportunity to come on and talk about our business on the radio today. It’s always a pleasure to chat to Kelly.

Here are some of the links to the resources I was talking about.

Check has you email address been part of any data breaches before.

https://haveibeenpwned.com

Check how good your password is and how easy it is for a computer to hack

https://howsecureismypassword.net

National Cyber Security Centre Ireland. For reporting all cyber security issues and a few resources.

https://www.ncsc.gov.ie

National Cyber Security Centre UK. This has much more useful resources than the Irish version. Some great tips and advice here.

https://www.ncsc.gov.uk

Ever wondered why your bank or phone company ask so many seemingly stupid questions to verify who you are? Watch Kevin Roose get hacked at DEF CON is one of the world's largest hacker conventions, held annually in Las Vegas.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F78UdORll-Q 

Google Calendar May Be Vulnerable to Phishing

People have gotten so used to receiving spam and notifications from messenger apps that they tend to take them for granted, making them easy prey for various online scams.  It’s particularly tricky when they strike at you through a trusted service, leaving you unaware of the veracity of the message that you’ve received.  Case in point, it had been uncovered very recently that Google Calendar may be vulnerable to phishing.

Phishing

 

Phishing is a type of online scam where a victim is persuaded into giving up their personal data.  The scammers would receive this information and use it to steal the victim’s money and even their identity.  Among these cyber-criminals’ tactics is to operate via legitimate services such as online calendar apps. 

 

The global cybersecurity company Kaspersky Labs uncovered the phishing scam in question.  There had been several reported cases of Google Calendar users receiving false unsolicited pop-up notifications intended to trick them into disclosing their personal information.

 

The attacks were observed to have occurred throughout the month of May, taking advantage of a particular feature for Gmail users on smartphones, wherein invitations and events are automatically added to a user’s calendar.  This happens when the scammer sends an unsolicited calendar invitation containing a link to a phishing website.  A pop-up notification would then appear on the home screen of the target’s smartphone, encouraging the recipient to click the link.

 

google-calendar-icon-lead.jpg

The unsuspecting victim would then be redirected to a site where they are made to fill out a questionnaire in exchange for prize money.  But in order to claim the cash prize, they would be asked to pay a “fixing” fee, which would require them to enter their credit card details, as well as other personal information such as their name, address and phone number.

 

In order to protect yourself from such attacks, here are a few simple steps that you can take.  First, open Google Calendar, click on the gear icon, click on “Settings,” scroll down to “Event Settings” then click on “Automatically add invitations.”  When the dropdown menu appears, click on “No, only show invitations to which I've responded,” and your chosen preference will automatically be saved.

google-calendar-android-100794956-large.jpg

 

The last step is to clear out the possibly fraudulent invitations on your Google Calendar.  To do this, go to the vertical menu at the right part of the page, click on “View options,” and make certain that the “Show declined events” box is unchecked.

 

With the steps detailed above, your Google Calendar would be well prepared for any possible phishing attack.  While you would still be able to get emails with invitations, it will be your choice whether or not to accept them. 

 

To be on the safe side, just as you should never talk to strangers in real life, always think twice before you decide to click on a strange link.  But if you should ever find yourself redirected to a strange website and are uncertain as to its legitimacy and safety, always refrain from entering your personal information.

emailsignew.jpg

The hackers have a plan in place for Windows 7 End of Life. Have you?

It has been widely rumored that hackers know of vulnerabilities that lie within Windows 7. They have held onto these until it is no longer supported by Microsoft. These will then be released on the public. So please look at getting your systems protected and up-to date. It is a lot easier than you think. Act now before you are a statistic. Contact us now to discuss your options.

win 7 endoflife.jpg

The hackers have a plan in place for Windows 7 End of Life. Have you?

It has been widely rumored that hackers know of vulnerabilities that lie within Windows 7. They have held onto these until it is no longer supported by Microsoft. These will then be released on the public. So please look at getting your systems protected and up-to date. It is a lot easier than you think. Act now before you are a statistic. Contact us now to discuss your options.

win 7 endoflife.jpg

Microsoft Office 365: A Quick Look At Its New Features And Upgrades

IT Support 4U-logo superman.jpg

The year 2018 rolled in with new developments with the Microsoft Office 365. They have been steadily revealing new features they are adding to their Office 365 platform. Mainly, customers would expect new designs and a more user-friendly interface. This seems to be Microsoft’s answer to their customers’ calls to simplify the user experience.

Microsoft aims to provide three major things - better search, a simpler and cleaner look, and improvements that can help the end user improve focus on their work. Documents even open faster as Office has been rebuilt on a modern platform to perform better.

 

The simplified ribbon

office_365.png

The previous Office ribbon displays a two-level toolbar that show instant access to editing tools. This type of toolbar can be seen in Excel, Word and PowerPoint. Microsoft has changed this to use less space on the screen and to streamline the ribbon to have a cleaner look. These changes can now be currently seen in Microsoft Word and Outlook and later on will be slowly added to other applications.

Many users would be happy to know that the simplified ribbon is optional. The user can always choose to revert back to the classic ribbon if they are already accustomed to it. Microsoft is careful not to change too much of what the users are already familiar with so as not to disrupt their current work. Their goal is to address what other users are asking for and make everyone happy.

 

Better search feature

Microsoft has made it even easier for users to use their search feature by integrating AI and Microsoft Graph technology. They now have the personalized intelligence search across Microsoft. With the “zero query search”, suggestions and recommendations will instantly appear in the search box once the cursor is pointed to it. It can give suggestions on actions you can take or related content you may be looking for. Outlook on the web is the first to have this AI search feature and will eventually roll out to the other applications.

 

office365-page-2.jpg

Improved design, colors and icons

The new icons and design first appeared in the Word web version for Office.com. The change in icons may seem a bit uncomfortable for some to look at, but in reality, it is all for a good reason.

The new icons are scalable vector graphics. This means that when you opt to use a bigger screen monitor, or try to project your laptop screen for wider viewing, the icons will scale better and won’t lose their resolution. The new icons have bolder lines and higher contrast, making it more visible for many audiences with visual impairment or under difficult lighting.

 

All these changes are being made to address the user’s call to make Microsoft Office adapt to modernization. It aims to make Office more accessible to all types of users. That is why Microsoft is taking each step slowly and listening to user feedback along the way as they unveil the new features one by one.

email signature.jpg

Don’t Be A Statistic To Cyber Crime

IT Support 4U-logo white backround final.png

These days, the average person will likely connect to the internet once every day in one way or the other.  From getting the news, researching on a project, doing video calls for work, down to relaxing through video streaming applications or connecting with friends via social media, we are all almost always online.  However, as we incorporate more and more of our lives into the virtual world of the internet, so are the cyber criminals on the prowl to get us.

 
What are cyber crimes and how can they harm us? 

Cyber crime.jpg

Cyber crimes refer to any illegal activities done using a computer and an internet connection or local network.  These can range from something relatively simple such as spreading computer viruses up to more serious offenses such as financial fraud, cyber extortion, harassment, terrorism and even child sexual exploitation.

 

Steps you can take to protect yourself


But we can’t just cut off the internet completely and just be a hermit, right?  Here are smart and easy ways on how we can keep safe online.

1. Use strong passwords

First and most basic is the use of strong passwords and always keeping them secure and private.  Avoid using the same password across different applications or sites.  Try to make them complex such as using a combination of letters, numbers and special characters.  It’s also wiser to keep away from passwords that can easily be guessed by other people like your name or birthday. We have all been trained for the last 20 years or so to have complex passwords with numbers, letters & symbols. These are hard for us to remember but easy for a computer to guess. Test your password here https://howsecureismypassword.net/. Now create a password with 4 random words all lower case and see how hard to is for a computer to guess.

2. Don’t share too much information on social media

Secondly, manage your social media settings by keeping your exact whereabouts and other crucial identification private.  It’s always better to err on the safe side of caution than to regret later. Don’t post anything on line that you wouldn’t stand up a room of people and say.


3. Educate your kids and monitor their internet activity appropriately.

Another common prey to cyber criminals are children.  If you have young kids and even teens, keep open communication lines with them about internet use.  Let them know that they can always come to you in cases of cyber bullying and harassment.  Let them know about stranger danger. Check what sites they log onto and ensure that they are kid-friendly and age appropriate.


4. Be careful with links you get through email.

cyber-criminals-have-turned-social-media-cyber-crime-into-a-3-billion-business_1500.jpg

To keep your software and data secure, think twice and verify before you click on links embedded in emails that came from people or groups you don’t know.  Avoid downloading anything from unknown sources.  It is also very helpful to install anti-virus software and to keep them updated regularly.  Be smart and keep two back-ups of your important files and data, with one back-up in an offline storage. Always check the email address or website URL before clicking on it as they can look very like the real website or email but may just be a spoof address.


5. Maintain financial security

As for maintaining financial security for online banking transactions or purchases, avoid giving out your credit or debit card details to untrusted sites.  Telltale signs of secure payment sites are when the website addresses begin with “https” or have the padlock icon at the start. Don’t even answer the phone to your bank as the phone numbers can be spoofed they will leave a message if it really them and you can call them back.


6. Make sure your connectivity settings are correct.

Lastly, as extra precaution for your devices, turn the bluetooth off when not in use. Be careful about connecting to Wi-Fi networks, and keep your own secured. Always activate your guest Wi-Fi at home and only let visitors or friends onto this network it stops too many people having access to your personal files.


If despite taking all the precautions and you still fall victim to cybercrime, keep in mind not to pay the ransom (for cases of cyber extortion or harassment) and immediately report the case to proper authorities.


Connecting to the internet and maximising its functionality for the full convenience it can offer need not be a trade-off between your security or risk.  You must simply be smart and know the tools on how to keep safe in this world wide web.

email signature.jpg

The hackers have a plan in place for Windows 7 End of Life. Have you?

It has been widely rumored that hackers know of vulnerabilities that lie within Windows 7. They have held onto these until it is no longer supported by Microsoft. These will then be released on the public. So please look at getting your systems protected and up-to date. It is a lot easier than you think. Act now before you are a statistic. Contact us now to discuss your options.

win 7 endoflife.jpg

Don’t Be A Statistic To Cyber Crime

IT Support 4U-logo white backround final.png

These days, the average person will likely connect to the internet once every day in one way or the other.  From getting the news, researching on a project, doing video calls for work, down to relaxing through video streaming applications or connecting with friends via social media, we are all almost always online.  However, as we incorporate more and more of our lives into the virtual world of the internet, so are the cyber criminals on the prowl to get us.

 
What are cyber crimes and how can they harm us? 

Cyber crime.jpg

Cyber crimes refer to any illegal activities done using a computer and an internet connection or local network.  These can range from something relatively simple such as spreading computer viruses up to more serious offenses such as financial fraud, cyber extortion, harassment, terrorism and even child sexual exploitation.

 

Steps you can take to protect yourself


But we can’t just cut off the internet completely and just be a hermit, right?  Here are smart and easy ways on how we can keep safe online.

1. Use strong passwords

First and most basic is the use of strong passwords and always keeping them secure and private.  Avoid using the same password across different applications or sites.  Try to make them complex such as using a combination of letters, numbers and special characters.  It’s also wiser to keep away from passwords that can easily be guessed by other people like your name or birthday. We have all been trained for the last 20 years or so to have complex passwords with numbers, letters & symbols. These are hard for us to remember but easy for a computer to guess. Test your password here https://howsecureismypassword.net/. Now create a password with 4 random words all lower case and see how hard to is for a computer to guess.

2. Don’t share too much information on social media

Secondly, manage your social media settings by keeping your exact whereabouts and other crucial identification private.  It’s always better to err on the safe side of caution than to regret later. Don’t post anything on line that you wouldn’t stand up a room of people and say.


3. Educate your kids and monitor their internet activity appropriately.

Another common prey to cyber criminals are children.  If you have young kids and even teens, keep open communication lines with them about internet use.  Let them know that they can always come to you in cases of cyber bullying and harassment.  Let them know about stranger danger. Check what sites they log onto and ensure that they are kid-friendly and age appropriate.


4. Be careful with links you get through email.

cyber-criminals-have-turned-social-media-cyber-crime-into-a-3-billion-business_1500.jpg

To keep your software and data secure, think twice and verify before you click on links embedded in emails that came from people or groups you don’t know.  Avoid downloading anything from unknown sources.  It is also very helpful to install anti-virus software and to keep them updated regularly.  Be smart and keep two back-ups of your important files and data, with one back-up in an offline storage. Always check the email address or website URL before clicking on it as they can look very like the real website or email but may just be a spoof address.


5. Maintain financial security

As for maintaining financial security for online banking transactions or purchases, avoid giving out your credit or debit card details to untrusted sites.  Telltale signs of secure payment sites are when the website addresses begin with “https” or have the padlock icon at the start. Don’t even answer the phone to your bank as the phone numbers can be spoofed they will leave a message if it really them and you can call them back.


6. Make sure your connectivity settings are correct.

Lastly, as extra precaution for your devices, turn the bluetooth off when not in use. Be careful about connecting to Wi-Fi networks, and keep your own secured. Always activate your guest Wi-Fi at home and only let visitors or friends onto this network it stops too many people having access to your personal files.


If despite taking all the precautions and you still fall victim to cybercrime, keep in mind not to pay the ransom (for cases of cyber extortion or harassment) and immediately report the case to proper authorities.


Connecting to the internet and maximising its functionality for the full convenience it can offer need not be a trade-off between your security or risk.  You must simply be smart and know the tools on how to keep safe in this world wide web.

email signature.jpg

Don’t Be A Statistic To Cyber Crime

IT Support 4U-logo white backround final.png

These days, the average person will likely connect to the internet once every day in one way or the other.  From getting the news, researching on a project, doing video calls for work, down to relaxing through video streaming applications or connecting with friends via social media, we are all almost always online.  However, as we incorporate more and more of our lives into the virtual world of the internet, so are the cyber criminals on the prowl to get us.

 
What are cyber crimes and how can they harm us? 

Cyber crime.jpg

Cyber crimes refer to any illegal activities done using a computer and an internet connection or local network.  These can range from something relatively simple such as spreading computer viruses up to more serious offenses such as financial fraud, cyber extortion, harassment, terrorism and even child sexual exploitation.

 

Steps you can take to protect yourself


But we can’t just cut off the internet completely and just be a hermit, right?  Here are smart and easy ways on how we can keep safe online.

1. Use strong passwords

First and most basic is the use of strong passwords and always keeping them secure and private.  Avoid using the same password across different applications or sites.  Try to make them complex such as using a combination of letters, numbers and special characters.  It’s also wiser to keep away from passwords that can easily be guessed by other people like your name or birthday. We have all been trained for the last 20 years or so to have complex passwords with numbers, letters & symbols. These are hard for us to remember but easy for a computer to guess. Test your password here https://howsecureismypassword.net/. Now create a password with 4 random words all lower case and see how hard to is for a computer to guess.

2. Don’t share too much information on social media

Secondly, manage your social media settings by keeping your exact whereabouts and other crucial identification private.  It’s always better to err on the safe side of caution than to regret later. Don’t post anything on line that you wouldn’t stand up a room of people and say.


3. Educate your kids and monitor their internet activity appropriately.

Another common prey to cyber criminals are children.  If you have young kids and even teens, keep open communication lines with them about internet use.  Let them know that they can always come to you in cases of cyber bullying and harassment.  Let them know about stranger danger. Check what sites they log onto and ensure that they are kid-friendly and age appropriate.


4. Be careful with links you get through email.

cyber-criminals-have-turned-social-media-cyber-crime-into-a-3-billion-business_1500.jpg

To keep your software and data secure, think twice and verify before you click on links embedded in emails that came from people or groups you don’t know.  Avoid downloading anything from unknown sources.  It is also very helpful to install anti-virus software and to keep them updated regularly.  Be smart and keep two back-ups of your important files and data, with one back-up in an offline storage. Always check the email address or website URL before clicking on it as they can look very like the real website or email but may just be a spoof address.


5. Maintain financial security

As for maintaining financial security for online banking transactions or purchases, avoid giving out your credit or debit card details to untrusted sites.  Telltale signs of secure payment sites are when the website addresses begin with “https” or have the padlock icon at the start. Don’t even answer the phone to your bank as the phone numbers can be spoofed they will leave a message if it really them and you can call them back.


6. Make sure your connectivity settings are correct.

Lastly, as extra precaution for your devices, turn the bluetooth off when not in use. Be careful about connecting to Wi-Fi networks, and keep your own secured. Always activate your guest Wi-Fi at home and only let visitors or friends onto this network it stops too many people having access to your personal files.


If despite taking all the precautions and you still fall victim to cybercrime, keep in mind not to pay the ransom (for cases of cyber extortion or harassment) and immediately report the case to proper authorities.


Connecting to the internet and maximising its functionality for the full convenience it can offer need not be a trade-off between your security or risk.  You must simply be smart and know the tools on how to keep safe in this world wide web.

email signature.jpg

Don’t Be A Statistic To Cyber Crime

IT Support 4U-logo white backround final.png

These days, the average person will likely connect to the internet once every day in one way or the other.  From getting the news, researching on a project, doing video calls for work, down to relaxing through video streaming applications or connecting with friends via social media, we are all almost always online.  However, as we incorporate more and more of our lives into the virtual world of the internet, so are the cyber criminals on the prowl to get us.

 
What are cyber crimes and how can they harm us? 

Cyber crime.jpg

Cyber crimes refer to any illegal activities done using a computer and an internet connection or local network.  These can range from something relatively simple such as spreading computer viruses up to more serious offenses such as financial fraud, cyber extortion, harassment, terrorism and even child sexual exploitation.

 

Steps you can take to protect yourself


But we can’t just cut off the internet completely and just be a hermit, right?  Here are smart and easy ways on how we can keep safe online.

1. Use strong passwords

First and most basic is the use of strong passwords and always keeping them secure and private.  Avoid using the same password across different applications or sites.  Try to make them complex such as using a combination of letters, numbers and special characters.  It’s also wiser to keep away from passwords that can easily be guessed by other people like your name or birthday. We have all been trained for the last 20 years or so to have complex passwords with numbers, letters & symbols. These are hard for us to remember but easy for a computer to guess. Test your password here https://howsecureismypassword.net/. Now create a password with 4 random words all lower case and see how hard to is for a computer to guess.

2. Don’t share too much information on social media

Secondly, manage your social media settings by keeping your exact whereabouts and other crucial identification private.  It’s always better to err on the safe side of caution than to regret later. Don’t post anything on line that you wouldn’t stand up a room of people and say.


3. Educate your kids and monitor their internet activity appropriately.

Another common prey to cyber criminals are children.  If you have young kids and even teens, keep open communication lines with them about internet use.  Let them know that they can always come to you in cases of cyber bullying and harassment.  Let them know about stranger danger. Check what sites they log onto and ensure that they are kid-friendly and age appropriate.


4. Be careful with links you get through email.

cyber-criminals-have-turned-social-media-cyber-crime-into-a-3-billion-business_1500.jpg

To keep your software and data secure, think twice and verify before you click on links embedded in emails that came from people or groups you don’t know.  Avoid downloading anything from unknown sources.  It is also very helpful to install anti-virus software and to keep them updated regularly.  Be smart and keep two back-ups of your important files and data, with one back-up in an offline storage. Always check the email address or website URL before clicking on it as they can look very like the real website or email but may just be a spoof address.


5. Maintain financial security

As for maintaining financial security for online banking transactions or purchases, avoid giving out your credit or debit card details to untrusted sites.  Telltale signs of secure payment sites are when the website addresses begin with “https” or have the padlock icon at the start. Don’t even answer the phone to your bank as the phone numbers can be spoofed they will leave a message if it really them and you can call them back.


6. Make sure your connectivity settings are correct.

Lastly, as extra precaution for your devices, turn the bluetooth off when not in use. Be careful about connecting to Wi-Fi networks, and keep your own secured. Always activate your guest Wi-Fi at home and only let visitors or friends onto this network it stops too many people having access to your personal files.


If despite taking all the precautions and you still fall victim to cybercrime, keep in mind not to pay the ransom (for cases of cyber extortion or harassment) and immediately report the case to proper authorities.


Connecting to the internet and maximising its functionality for the full convenience it can offer need not be a trade-off between your security or risk.  You must simply be smart and know the tools on how to keep safe in this world wide web.

email signature.jpg