Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

CNet’s Webware 100

Readers excited about “Web 2.0″, SaaS, “online apps”, and/or “cloud computing” (oh.. almost forgot, “hosted services”) might like to cast their vote for their favorite cloudware apps on C/Net’s Webware 100: The official 2009 kickoff.

To read the article, cast a vote, or see last year’s 100 winners, click here.

“They’re back! Just as they did in 2007 and 2008, the 2009 Webware 100 Awards will honor the people’s choice for the best Web 2.0 apps and services. Last year, nearly 2 million votes were cast to determine the most popular Web apps. This year, the apps are better and the market is even more competitive, so we expect a vigorous contest.”

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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February 14, 2009 Posted by | Internet, News, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Outlook as a security risk

Disable E-mail Client’s Preview Pane For Safer Computing & Less Spam

A recent article on scam spam (e-mail) prompted a reader to send in this good question,

Hi Paul –
You wrote “don’t even open e-mail from unknown sources.. doing so can/will mark your e-mail address as a “live” person, …”.
How do we delete without opening a specific email message?   Even while deleting in bulk the first email in the highlighted selections opens.  I’m using Outlook Express.  Thanks for your help!

What is being referred to is the feature common to e-mail clients called the “Preview Pane”.


Dear Reader–
You’re correct that most webmail settings, and e-mail clients, (by default) have what is called a “preview pane”, which opens the first (topmost/most recent) e-mail in your Inbox, and shows you the first few lines of the e-mail. Yes.. this will trigger whatever the spammers/hackers are using to verify receipt (such as downloading an invisible jpeg). Because of this, I always turn the Preview Pane off.
To do this in OE, click on the View menu and select Layout.
Then in the Preview Pane Properties, uncheck the “Show preview pane” checkbox.

BTW– by exploring Properties/Options/Settings/Preferences (different names for the same thing), you can disable the preview pane in every e-mail viewer.. Hotmail, Thunderbird, etc.

Tip of the day: While many people find the preview window a convenient way to skim their incoming mail, using it automatically opens your machine up to security risks (especially if you are allowing HTML, and/or images, as the OE pictured above does) and tells anyone who’s interested that yes, is a valid address.. suitable for spamming.

I advise disabling the feature, and doing without the ’speed enhancement’ of previewing. Doing so will reduce the amount of spam you receive, improve your privacy, and close the door on one of the methods hackers can use to infect your machine.
Trust me folks, you do not want to be on a spammer list.

Today’s free download: (For Mac) Evernote is the ubiquitous notetaking/data capture utility, and I was pleased to find it for Apple machines/devices. From site: “Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at any time, from anywhere.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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February 14, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail, how to, Internet, privacy, security, spam and junk mail, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A New Twist…

Folks — a couple of quick “must read”:

BEWARE of “ScanVirus” – A “FAKE” Cloud Anti-Virus Service

“With the wave of cloud apps appearing on the internet, I knew it would be a matter of time before malware would find its’ way into the cloud…”

Twitter and the dangers of clickjacking

Twitter users are, well, a-twitter about an innocent but indicative joke that some clever person just played on half the Twitterverse.

February 14, 2009 Posted by | advice, anti-spyware, antivirus, computers, cyber crime, hackers, Internet, News, security, software, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment