It's wayyy easier than you may think! One of the reasons is that Android phones are built with what's called an "open operating system", which allows anyone to see and change the way things on the phone get used. Apple, on the other hand, has a "closed operating system" which does not allows this. Also, anyone can sell an Android app from anywhere. Apple requires that anyone writing an app submit their app for review against hacks and viruses before being allowed to sell it. Additionally, all Apple apps are ONLY sold via iTunes to minimize the risk of rogue apps setting out onto the market! Watch this video!
There's a new internet security bug called Cloudbleed. It's a major security breach from the internet company Cloudflare that leaked user passwords, and other potentially sensitive information to thousands of websites over six months. It is described as "sitting down at a restaurant, supposedly at a clean table, and in addition to being handed a menu, you're also handed the contents of the previous diner's wallet or purse." The good news is that the worst of it is over, for now. The bug was stopped within 44 minutes of finding out about it.
What websites were affected? At this point, we know that Uber, Fitbit and OKCupid were three directly affected, but there's thousands more.
This is just another reason to keep your home & work network protected and your PC/Mac virus and malware prevention software always up to date! Read here for more about Cloudbleed. As always, if you need help protecting your home/work network and PC's, contact TheGoToTechGuru!
We've likely all seen some sort of computer hacking on TV shows and movies. But how realistic are they? While it's often over dramatized (ie. it's much less exciting in real life), sometimes it's not that far off from the truth. The biggest difference is that in real life, it takes much longer than on TV. Surprised?? Read this article to see how it's done! Although often plausible, in many cases, fiction is truer than real life!
Wireless vs. Wired Charging
You've probably heard about wireless device charging, where you just put your smartphone or tablet on a "pad" and it charges without you having to actually plug your device into the wall. In theory, it's a great idea, but in practice not so much. First of all, wireless charging generates more heat in your device; heat is the number one enemy of such devices! Second, even using the low-amp slower charge, wired charging is faster than wireless. Third, you probably have more than one charging cable and wireless chargers are not cheap. For more information, see this article!
With all the issues and questions regarding international travel and the ability of even USA Citizens being able to get back into their own country, here are a few tips on your cellphone rights and alternatives on how to keep your cellphone data yours.
Most websites and apps let you sign in with just a username and password. If anyone guesses either of these, they can take over your account, steal all your money and/or steal your identity. An additional layer of security is called "Two Factor Authentication" or 2FA. With 2FA, there is an extra step the user must complete before access to the account is granted. It's usually request for a piece of information that only the legitmate owner of the account would know. This additional piece of information could be the name of the owner's first pet dog which is requested after the password is entered. It could also be a rotating/changing computer generated code that is sent to the cellphone of the owner via text. This cellphone number is previously established by the legitimate account owner as part of the account setup. This prevents a hacker from getting sent the code (unless they stole your cellphone as well). If available, you should always use 2FA, especially for bank accounts, credit card accounts, brokerage accounts and/or any account that holds personal identification information (PII) such as your social security number. Yes, it's an extra step, but it's worth the time to protect your PII and your finances.
For questions or help on setting up 2FA for your accounts, contact TheGoToTechGuru.
If you haven't heard, Facebook now offers live streaming, which allows your "Friends" to see live video of whatever you're recording, like a party. All you need is an Apple (iOS) or Android mobile device! Follow this link on how it works!
Your smartphone's GPS uses both your cellular and Wi-Fi connection for accuracy. Most of the time, when you're in the car or walking outdoors, the Wi-Fi is turned off to save battery power. Yes, your GPS will work with just cellular, but it's not as accurate as when you also have the Wi-Fi turned on as well, since the GPS has an error rate of +/- 100 feet.
To increase your GPS accuracy, just turn on your Wi-Fi. You don't have to be connected to a Wi-Fi hotspot for the GPS to benefit from it, it just has to be turned on!
Other factors that affect GPS accuracy are whether there are physical obstructions between your phone and the satellites, such as walls, building and trees, so make sure you have a clear line-of-sight between your phone and the sky. Your GPS is most accurate when it can "see" all 4 satellites. It will still work with fewer, but again, the accuracy will be affected. Your GPS may work despite these obstructions, however, its accuracy may be affected significantly.
Although when driving, 100 feet may not make much of a difference, it does when you are walking or hailing an Uber, otherwise the driver may think you are 1-2 blocks from your actual location! If you want to make sure you're located at an exact address for an Uber pickup vs. depending on the GPS to "pin" you accurately, type in the actual street address of your location!
Broadband is offered in 4 major flavors today: Cable, DSL, Fios and Satellite. There is a lot of confusion between these, so here's what you need to know.
Cable can offer not just TV, but internet and landline VOIP (Voice Over IP; ie. internet telephone) telephone services as well, depending on your cable company and what package options they offer. There are a few main differences between cable and the alternative DSL and Fios options. Cable uses a copper line from the cable company to a junction box in your neighborhood or apartment building/condo complex and is split amoung your neighbors and you. As such, the bandwidth is shared with all your neighbors. Thus, if a few select people are gaming or doing heaving downloading, everyone else's bandwidth degrades.
DSL stands for Digital Subscriber Line and is for internet connectivity only, not for TV. It uses the regular telephone copper wire between the phone company and your home. You must have regular telephone service from your phone company in order to get DSL, but your telephone itself does not use it since it is just for internet access. Unlike cable, this line is dedicated to your dwelling so is not shared with your neighbors. It is typically slower than cable and Fios but is faster than satellite. It is the least expensive of these options.
Fios stands for Fiber Optic Service and is offered by Verizon. It is called by other names by other companies like AT&T and Qwest. Fios can be used for TV, internet and your landline phone. A fiber optic cable is run from the phone company to your house, so it is dedicated and thus bandwidth is not shared with your neighbors. If you install Fios, you MUST use the fiber optic telephone service since it replaces your regular copper-based landline phone. You still get a landline phone but it will be fiber based vs. copper based. It is the fastest of the three options because signals run through fiber optic cables and thus travel literally at the speed of light! Fios does come with a backup battery for when the power goes out, enabling you to make phone calls, watch TV and access the internet for a limited time. ***Of the four broadband options, Fios is the fastest and best option*** The downside of Fios is that when the power goes out and backup battery runs out, your landline phone won't work (with your old copper-based telephone you could still make calls). But you always have your cellphone!
Satellite currently only offers TV and Internet. Internet-wise, it is the slowest and most expensive of these options. Placement of the satellite dish MUST have a direct line-of-sight view of the satellite. This means the dish must be able to communicate with the satellite via a 100% unobstructed view. This means no trees, buildings and the like can be between your dish and the satellite. If you live in an extremely rural part of the world, like way out in the country, satellite may be your only option.
There are other considerations, especially when installing these in your home (placement, etc), so call TheGotoTechGuru for help!
Yep, you read it right. Those airline luggage tags, which contain a printed six digit code, can be used by anyone to get your name, address, phone number, credit card number and more! So take precautions when traveling and after you get home! Read more about luggage tag hacking risks here.
Technology has come a long way. Now someone has invented a way for someone long distance to feel your kiss in realtime! Check out this amazing video!
The two worst enemies of not just your computer but any electonics, are heat and dust! This includes both external heat such as leaving your electronic devices in a hot car as well as heat generated by the device itself. When it comes to dust, there's a correct way to clean it and it may not be what you think! Water & Moisture are also terrible for electronics, including condensation that can be created by bringing your stone cold laptop from your car into your house! Learn more here on how to prevent heat and clean dust!
I love technology and how it enhances our lives! Just think, without the Apollo moon missions, we might not have calculators! Imagine!!