Tech – for Everyone

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

Okay.. Let’s cast a critical eye..

At the bottom of an article about how, for a few bucks, ANY-one can buy a ‘kit’ and make their own Android Ransomware (see, Easy-to-Use Apps Allow Anyone to Create Android Ransomware Within Seconds) we are advised how to ‘stay safe’ from such unhappy things..

How to Protect Your Android Devices from Ransomware Attacks

In order to protect against such threats on mobile devices, you are recommended to:

  1. Always keep regular backups of your important data.
  2. Make sure that you run an active anti-virus security suite of tools on your machine.
  3. Avoid downloading apps from unknown sites and third-party app stores.
  4. Always pay close attention to the permissions requested by an app, even if it is downloaded from an official app store.
  5. Do not open any email attachments from unknown sources.
  6. Finally, browse the Internet safely.

And let’s analyze that advice with our critical eye:

  1. Always keep regular backups of your important data. Because it’s not a question of if you’ll get screwed, it’s a question of when.
  2. Make sure that you run an active anti-virus security suite of tools on your machine. No arguements. If it connects to the Internet you NEED this. But KNOW THIS: it’s only a semi-effective shield, NOT bulletproof armor.
  3. Avoid downloading apps from unknown sites and third-party app stores. Or even regular ‘stores’, as we’ve seen them get ‘poisoned’ already (Google Play Store, recently [see https://thehackernews.com/2017/08/android-ddos-botnet.html]). So let’s just change it to: Do NOT download apps.
    [edit 9/18:
    and yet again. See this http://thehackernews.com/2017/09/play-store-malware.html.]
  4. Always pay close attention to the permissions requested by an app, even if it is downloaded from an official app store. Utterly pointless to advise this. First of all no one will. Second, were ‘average people’ to start doing this, they’d have no clue what all that ‘tech jargon’ means. And 3rd, most apps don’t offer you any choices with ‘Permissions’ – if you want the app, you have to accept the ads and the spying. So let’s just use my #3 as our guide.
  5. Do not open any email attachments from unknown sources. Um. People who still do this have never read a tech article in their life. So they aren’t seeing this.Those who do (read articles) KNOW email is still a favorite way for the criminals to infect your machine. MY advice? Unless someone you know has told you, “I’m sending you a document”, don’t open it – period.
  6. Finally, browse the Internet safely. What? Great advice! Only one problem — there is no such thing. ( Um … I guess that translates to “don’t look at pron”?)
  7. Do not ‘jailbreak’ or ‘root’ your device. (Okay.. so I had to add one.)

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Today’s quotable quote:Lighten up, just enjoy life, smile more, laugh more, and don’t get so worked up about things.” ~ Kenneth Branagh

Copyright 2007-2017 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

August 28, 2017 Posted by | advice, Android, cellular, consumer electronics, cyber crime, e-mail, gadgets, Google, hackers, Internet, mobile, News, privacy, security | , , , , , | Leave a comment

14 Tips to be safer on Public Wi-Fi (‘hotspots’)

A couple reading reco’s for mobile Internet users.

* 14 Public Wi-Fi Hotspot Security Tips You Need

Sometimes you need it so bad, you don’t care if it is clean or dirty. You don’t care who has been there before or what viruses they’ve left behind. I speak, of course, of public Wi-Fi hotspots, aka honeypots for weak-willed souls desperate for a sense of connection. Look, it’s okay to connect to strange networks. Just use protection, cover your tracks, and follow PCMag’s 14 Tips for Public Hotspot Security. Be safe out there.” Read more..

I disagree with what the author wrote there a bit.. it’s really not ‘okay’ to use public wi-fi.. (that’s why I put ‘safer’ where the Industry puts ‘safe’) but I know you’re going to. One of the main reasons is “53 percent can’t tell a secure network from an insecure one.”
That’s so shockingly stupid clueless in 2017 .. do we need to remove these devices from the hands of the masses?

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Today’s quote:A paranoid is someone who knows a little of what’s going on.” ~ William S. Burroughs

Copyright 2007-2017 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

August 17, 2017 Posted by | advice, cellular, computers, consumer electronics, how to, Internet, mobile, privacy, security | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just don’t download any apps..

Guys, I have long told people, if you don’t absolutely need it, don’t install it (and you sure as shooting don’t need five media players..). Well now there’s even more reason to repeat that advice.

* More than 1,000 Spyware Apps Found On Android App Stores

If you think you are downloading apps from Google Play Store and you are secure, then watch out! Someone has managed to flood third-party app stores and Google Play Store with more than a thousand malicious apps, which can monitor almost anything a user does on their mobile device from silently …” Read More..

Update: 500+ Android apps found containing program that can download spyware plug-in

More than 500 mobile apps on Google Play were recently discovered containing an advertising software development kit capable of downloading malicious plug-ins that can spy on Android users’ call histories.. Apps using the ad SDK, a product called Igexin, were downloaded over 100 million times by Android device owners before Google removed these programs from its store..Read more..

Tell your friends.

Addenda: I have been asked my thoughts on Wikileaks and the (alleged) CIA hacking tools (such as this one, posted today) often enough now that I think I should mention them here.. please don’t think the CIA are the only folks who can do/are doing these ‘exploits’. They basically copied from the hackers. These things are possible because all our devices/technologies are inherently, fundamentally, insecure. (Don’t believe me? Read this.)

* * *

Today’s quote:I am thankful the most important key in history was invented. It’s not the key to your house, your car, your boat, your safety deposit box, your bike lock or your private community. It’s the key to order, sanity, and peace of mind. The key is ‘Delete.'” ~ Elayne Boosler

Copyright 2007-2017 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

August 11, 2017 Posted by | advice, Android, cellular, consumer electronics, cyber crime, gadgets, Google, hackers, Internet, mobile, News, security, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This is why so few posts..

I see headlines like this everyday.

And nobody seems to care.

LATEST NEWS Nov 29, 2016

Cyber Attack Knocks Nearly a Million Routers Offline

Mirai Botnet is getting stronger and more notorious each day that passes by. The reason: Insecure Internet-of-things Devices. Last month, the Mirai botnet knocked the entire Internet offline for a few hours, crippling some of the world’s biggest and most popular websites. Now, more than 900,000 …

Read More
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San Francisco Metro System Hacked with Ransomware; Resulting in Free Rides

Nothing is immune to being hacked when hackers are motivated. The same proved by hackers on Friday, when more than 2,000 computer systems at San Francisco’s public transit agency were apparently got hacked. San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation Agency, also known as MUNI, offered free rides on …

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Hacker who exposed Steubenville Rape Faces longer Prison term than Rapists

Remember Steubenville High School Rape Case? In 2012, Steubenville (Ohio) high school’s football team players gang-raped an unconscious teenage girl from West Virginia and took photographs of the sexual assault. In December 2012, a member of the hacker collective Anonymous hacked into the …

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Researchers Show How to Steal Tesla Car by Hacking into Owner’s Smartphone

New technology is always a little scary, so are Smart Cars. From GPS system and satellite radio to wireless locks, steering, brakes, and accelerator, today vehicles are more connected to networks than ever, and so they are more hackable than ever. It’s not new for security researchers to hack …

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Beware! Malicious JPG Images on Facebook Messenger Spreading Locky Ransomware

If you receive an image file sent by someone, even your friend, on your Facebook Messenger, LinkedIn or any other social media platform, just DO NOT CLICK ON IT. Even JPG image file could eventually infect your computer with the infamous Locky Ransomware. Earlier this week, we reported a new …

Read more..

Worse, there’s too many people using computers who’ve never even heard of ‘ransomware’.

Well.. I’ve been pointing to important headlines such as these since 2007. Been doing my part. It’s up to you people to educate your friends and loved ones with the bleak picture. The handwriting’s on the wall, folks.

Copyright 2007-2015 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

November 29, 2016 Posted by | cellular, cloud computing, computers, consumer electronics, cyber crime, Cyberwarfare, e-mail, gadgets, hackers, Internet, News, tech | 6 Comments

Own an Android? Read this!

It just keeps getting better and better..

* Pre-installed Backdoor On 700 Million Android Phones Sending Users’ Data To China

Do you own an Android smartphone? You could be one of those 700 Million users whose phone is secretly sending text messages to China every 72 hours. You heard that right. Over 700 Million Android smartphones contain a secret ‘backdoor’ that surreptitiously sends all your text messages, call log, contact list, location history, and app data to China every 72 hours.” Read more..

This is why you don’t let your enemy build your stuff.. And it’s as predictable as the sunrise. It might sound paranoid, but it wouldn’t surprise me if this (type thing) isn’t on every device made there (maybe dormant) and it’s why I won’t buy Lenovo.

November 16, 2016 Posted by | advice, Android, cellular, consumer electronics, cyber crime, Cyberwarfare, gadgets, News, privacy, security | Leave a comment

Something for both Apple and PC..

Folks, whether you own Apple, or Microsoft, or both, I hope these two How To items will be of use.

* 30 Hidden Tips for Mastering iOS 10

Apple’s iOS 10 has arrived. These tips will help you make the most of it.Read more..

* How to tweak the Windows 10 Action Center to make it less annoying

The default settings for the Windows 10 Action Center can be irritating. Take a few minutes to customize it and reduce the annoyance factor.Read more..

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Today’s quote:I truly believe that everything that we do and everyone that we meet is put in our path for a purpose. There are no accidents; we’re all teachers – if we’re willing to pay attention to the lessons we learn, trust our positive instincts and not be afraid to take risks or wait for some miracle to come knocking at our door.” ~ Marla Gibbs

Copyright 2007-2015 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

September 19, 2016 Posted by | advice, Apple, cellular, computers, consumer electronics, gadgets, how to, iPhone, Microsoft, mobile, performance, Portable Computing, software, tech, tweaks, Windows, Windows 10 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Apple owners — 5 quick security tweaks

Folks, if you upgraded to iOS 10 on your iPhone and/or iPad (and it didn’t brick your device) please read, and follow, this brief How To tutorial article.

* Five security settings in iOS 10 you should immediately change

These tweaks will lock down your iPhone or iPad to protect your privacy.Read more..

[ I suggest doing that even if you don’t believe there’s any such thing as Privacy anymore.. ]

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Today’s quote:Two persons cannot long be friends if they cannot forgive each other’s little failings.” ~ Jean de la Bruyere

Copyright 2007-2015 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

September 14, 2016 Posted by | Apple, cellular, computers, consumer electronics, gadgets, how to, Internet, iPhone, Portable Computing, privacy, security, software | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment