A cheap power strip might protect equipment from power surges, but it does nothing to help when the power goes out and your system comes to a halting crash. Your hard drive is constantly reading and writing, even when you're not doing anything on your computer. Your hard drive, where all our critical files and data reside, can be irreparably damaged when it is in the middle of a read/write and there is an unexpected power loss, such as due to a lightening storm. Although you may not notice obvious damage immediately, slowness in your computer or when things stop working / working correctly as they used to are signs there has been damage. Additionally, during storms and even on clear, sunny days, there are power surges and brown outs (lulls in power). These can damage your computers electronics as well. Although a surge protector can protect again power surges, it won't do anything about brown outs.
In order to protect your computer against power lulls and interruptions, you need a battery backup, appropriately named an Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS). UPS units provide a buffer against power supply interruptions ranging from a few minutes to an hour or more depending on the size of the unit.
A simple way to think about the importance of a UPS unit is to think about working on a desktop or laptop computer. You’re at home, your computer is plugged into an appropriate surge protection strip, and you’re busily finishing up some reports for work. A summer storm suddenly knocks the power out. Although the lights go out, your work on the computer is uninterrupted because it switched over to the UPS battery power seamlessly when the flow of electricity from the power cord vanished. You now have plenty of time to save your work and gracefully shut down your machine, preventing any damage.
For more information on UPS's, read this article.
For help with purchasing and installing, call The GoTo Tech Guru!
#mac #chromebook #windows #batteries
Whether you're a gadget king or just want to make life easier, here are some of the top accessories for your iPhone and iPad! Check them out here!
Careless workers and poor passwords have led to a rise in ransomware attacks and other breaches on SMBs, which cost an average of $1 million. Negligent employees are the no. 1 cause of data breaches at small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) across North America and the UK, according to a new study from Keeper Security and the Ponemon Institute, released Tuesday. Of the 1,000 IT professionals surveyed, 54% said careless workers were the root cause of cybersecurity incidents, followed by poor company password policies.
This is especially concerning due to the rise in ransomware attacks: More than 50% of SMBs surveyed had experienced such an attack in the past year, which often enters an organization via a phishing email aimed at tricking an employee into clicking a malicious link or download. Indeed, in the survey, 79% of those hit said the ransomware entered their system through a phishing or social engineering attack. Further, of those who experienced an attack, 53% were hit more than once in the year.
More than 61% of SMBs had been breached in the last 12 months, compared to 55% in 2016. In an average breach, the amount of data stolen nearly doubled, from 5,079 records in 2016 to 9,350 in 2017.
Read here for more details and how to protect yourself. As always, The GoTo Tech Guru is always here to help protect you! Just call us!
Email spoofing is the forgery of an email header so that the message appears to have originated from someone or somewhere other than the actual source. Email spoofing is a tactic used in phishing and spam campaigns because people are more likely to open an email when they think it has been sent by a legitimate source.
A recent Trend Micro report identified that CEOs and managers are most likely to have their email spoofed, while CFOs are the biggest targets of these attacks. Spoofed emails used in these kinds of attacks are part of a greater trend in cybersecurity known as business email compromise (BEC), the report said. FBI data cited in the report notes that the global losses due to BEC are $5.3 billion since 2013.
Read here for the scoop and how to protect yourself. Of course, The GoTo Tech Guru is always here to help protect you! Just call us!
Design limitations of the Tesla Model S's Autopilot played a major role in the first known fatal crash of a highway vehicle operating under automated control systems. The direct cause of the crash was an inattentive Tesla driver's over reliance on technology. Read this article for the details.
To ensure that you have as secure an experience as possible, Google is rolling out a trio of important changes to Chrome -- for Windows users, at least. It will detect unwanted software that might be bundled with downloads, and provides help with removing it.
Separately, Chrome now has built-in hijack detection which should be able to detect when user settings are changes without consent. This is a setting that has already rolled out to users, and Google says that millions of users have already been protected against unwanted setting changes such as having their search engine altered.
But it's the Chrome Cleanup tool that Google is particularly keen to highlight. A redesigned interface makes it easier to use and to see what unwanted software has been detected and singled out for removal. By teaming up with ESET, Google says it has been able to make the tool even more effective.
Read here to get the scoop. As always, The GoTo Tech Guru is here to help make your life easier!
#news #windows #virus&malware
A new breed of Android ransomware has been discovered that hits victims with a double whammy. DoubleLocker not only encrypts data as all ransomware does, it also changes the PIN on the target device.
DoubleLocker was discovered by security researchers at ESET. They say that the ransomware abuses Android accessibility settings, and is the first to use a double-lock approach. Based on previously released banking malware, it is though that a test version of DoubleLocker could have been in the wild since as early as May.
Despite the banking roots, the ransomware is focused purely on extracting money from victims as a ransom -- it is not capable of accessing banking details stored on a phone or tablet. DoubleLocker spreads as a fake version of Adobe Flash Player, and it uses a clever trick to ensure that it gets activated -- enabling accessibility services and then setting itself as the default home app.
Once active, DoubleLocker will first change the device's PIN to a random number. It is not stored on the target device, so there is no way to determine what it is. This is the first incentive for a victim to pay a ransom, and once this has been paid, the PIN can be remotely reset. Encrypting data using AES encryption algorithm, appending the extension ".cryeye" is the second incentive.
If you have a backup of your data, it is possible to remove the ransomware without having to cough up any money. Otherwise, it will be next to impossible without wiping your phone to factory settings, which will result in loss of everything that is on your phone. But not all is lost as most data these days, such as Gmail and Contacts are actually stored in the cloud and can be easily resync'd with your reset phone. For other possible options on recovering your phone without your Pin, read this blog article: What if You Forget your Android Phone's Password?
Learn more here or call The Go To Tech Guru for assistance!
#news #android #virus&malware
Several security flaws in the Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) protocol were recently disclosed, which can reportedly expose any wireless device. An attacker within range of a victim can exploit these weaknesses using Key Reinstallation Attacks (KRACKs). Attackers can use this attack technique to read information that was previously assumed to be safely encrypted by easily getting your Wi-Fi password. This can be abused to steal sensitive information such as credit card numbers, passwords, chat messages, emails, photos, and so on. The attack works against all modern protected Wi-Fi networks. Depending on the network configuration, it is also possible to inject and manipulate data. For example, an attacker might be able to inject ransomware or other malware into websites or seemingly legitimate files you may download.
The weaknesses are in the Wi-Fi standard itself, and not in individual products or implementations. Therefore, any correct implementation of WPA2 is likely affected. To prevent the attack, users must update affected products as soon as security updates become available. Note that if your device supports Wi-Fi, it is most likely affected.
Microsoft has already released a patch for Windows, so be sure to update your computer! Versions include: Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2016. You can find every patch for KRACK here.
Use the following methods to protect yourself:
1. Do NOT use Wi-Fi in public or other dense areas such as office / apartment / condo buildings.
2. Use an Ethernet cable instead of Wi-Fi.
3. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
4. Use your phone data instead of Wi-Fi.
5. Use HTTPS instead of HTTP urls. You can add a HTTPS Everywhere browser extension to Google Chrome, Firefox or Opera. There’s no need to configure it, so anybody can do it. In most cases, this extension will allow HTTP urls to use HTTPS instead.
Read here for the gory details. As always, The GoTo Tech Guru is here to help protect you.
#security #virus&malware #windows #wifi #news
"Whenever antivirus software is mentioned, someone always seems to chime up and say they don’t need an antivirus because they’re “careful”, and “common sense is all you need”. This isn’t true. No matter how smart think you are, you can still benefit from an antivirus on Windows."
Read here for all the why's and don'ts, no matter how careful you are! As always, contact The GoTo Tech Guru for all your security and tech needs!
Here are some of the worse iPhone apps!
Home Depot has just announced the latest in gardening tech!
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iOS 11 is officially out, but before you download and install it, there’s one thing you should keep in mind. Namely, it’s that the next-generation operating system will be incompatible with 32-bit devices and apps. Put simply, your 32-bit apps that have not been updated by their respective developers won’t open if you install iOS 11. Similarly, you won’t be able to find 32-bit apps in the App Store — and you won’t be able to download previously purchased apps that have not been updated to your iOS 11-loaded device. Read here for the full details!
Android used to have a way to bypass your PIN or password, but that feature was removed in Android 5.0. However, there are a few ways to still gain access to your phone if you know the following tricks! Read this article for the inside scoop!
Apple’s custom-designed A-series chips are marvels in mobile processing, powering generation-after-generation of iPhone and iPad devices with their advanced, ultra-fast yet power-efficient architecture. Over the past year or so, specifically, Apple’s systems on a chip (SoCs) have absolutely obliterated their closest competition — even comparable offerings like Samsung’s Galaxy S8, S8+, or LG’s G6. Read here for the benchmark test results!
The reality is that password database compromises are a concern, no matter how a company may try to spin it. But there are a few things you can do to insulate yourself, no matter how bad a company’s security practices are. Whatever a service says when its password database is stolen, it’s best to assume that every service is completely incompetent and act accordingly. Here's what you need to know and how to protect yourself!
I love technology and how it enhances our lives! Just think, without the Apollo moon missions, we might not have calculators! Imagine!!