Tech – for Everyone

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

Nah. This isn’t creepy..

* How Google wants to build a world where every device is listening

The firm is gathering speech samples from people across the globe, as part of a push to get simple voice recognition everywhere, paving the way for voice commands throughout our homes.Read more..

Tell ‘ya what. I’ll gladly touch a screen/mouse/keyboard and Veto your developing this further. How’s that?

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.

September 19, 2017 Posted by | computers, consumer electronics, Google, Internet scam, News, privacy, tech | Leave a comment

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.)

* * *

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

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

You just gotta love it…

* Loss from cybercrime exceeded $1.3B in 2016, FBI report

“The financial loss from cybercrime in the U.S. exceeded $1.3 billion in 2016, a rise of 24 percent, according to a new report issued by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).” Read more..

And remember gang –> that’s ONLY what was reported to the FBI. Think “tip of the iceberg”. (And, only USA losses.. How much global?)

* Google Gets Record-Breaking $2.7 Billion Fine for Manipulating Search Results

Google has just lost its biggest regulatory battle! Google has been hit with a record-breaking $2.7 billion (€2.42 billion) fine by the European antitrust officials for unfairly manipulating search results since 2008. After a lengthy seven-year investigation that was launched in 2010..Read more..

.. “since 2008” .. HA! Try, “since Google”. And don’t think Google’s going to pay that fine — the advertisers are. Be smart. Bail out now people.

* Judy Android malware unleashes massive attack on Google Play Store (NOTE! it wasn’t an ‘attack’.. the criminal hackers ‘poisoned’ the site with infected apps.)

When it comes to apps for mobile devices, InfoSec experts will always recommend downloading from official vendors like the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. While these sites are much more stringent in their standards for malicious app prevention, there are always exceptions (which require the consumer to use common sense).Read more..

OMG. Too funny. “require people use common sense” ..!

Sad part is.. that ‘attack’ netted tons of cash with automated click fraud (do you advertise? Look up the term ‘click fraud’ NOW!)

ALERT: New Petya ransomware variant attacking computers worldwide

Following the high profile WannaCry attack merely a month ago, we have detected another ransomware outbreak that is spreading rapidly across the globe. It appears to be a new variant of the known Petya ransomware, also known as Petna, and it has already affected many high profile companies and government institutions across Europe and currently shows no sign of slowing down.Read more..

And: Six quick facts to know about today’s global ransomware attack

This is what you need to know — right now.Read more..

* * *

* And you better believe — my ‘page views’ will take yet another hit for posting this.

Today’s quote:In view of the fact that God limited the intelligence of man, it seems unfair that He did not also limit his stupidity.” ~ Konrad Adenauer

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.

June 27, 2017 Posted by | advice, cyber crime, Google, hackers, Internet, News, phraud, security, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The More You Know, the Less You Want to Know

(aka “The News Keeps Getting Brighter and Brighter.”)

sigh.. okay folks. Be aware:

* Traveling to US? Agencies want to Spy on your Social Media activities right from Airport

Hey! Welcome to the United States. May we have your Twitter handle, please? That’s exactly what you’ll likely be asked by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection at the airport prior to entering U.S. soil. Yes, your Twitter handle may soon be part of the US Visa process as U.S. Customs and Border … ” Read More..

Of course, that’s just par for our course. And so is this:

* Dozens of Malicious Apps on Play Store can Root & Hack 90% of Android Devices

It’s not at all surprising that the Google Play Store is surrounded by a large number of malicious apps that has the ability to gain users’ attention into falling victim for one, but this time, it is even worse than most people realize. Researchers at Trend Micro have detected a family of …Read more..

* * *

Today’s quote:I’m not advocating we should all be back in the kitchen and cooking all the time, because life’s too short and we’ve got more interesting things to do. But to rediscover the intense pleasure of making a cake and putting it down on the table is ridiculously satisfying, out of all proportion to the work.” ~ Jane Asher

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.

June 27, 2016 Posted by | advice, Android, cloud computing, computers, consumer electronics, cyber crime, Google, hackers, hardware, Internet, News, privacy, security | 2 Comments

An app that records your life so you always have a witness + FF

Two items for you today, Folks.

*An app that passively records your life so you always have a witness

Alibi is an Android app that records the last hour of your life. So if you’re in a protest, police altercation, or even a dangerous personal situation, you can always have evidence.Read more..

[note: currently Android only.]

Today’s Fun Video: (Not quite my usual Rock&Roll)

Love her voice…

Today’s quote:Don’t assume, ask. Be kind. Tell the truth. Don’t say anything you can’t stand behind fully. Have integrity. Tell people how you feel.” ~ Warsan Shire

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.

May 29, 2015 Posted by | Android, cellular, computers, free software, gadgets, Google, mobile, Portable Computing, privacy, security, software | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment