Tech – for Everyone

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

Games For Your Tuesday*

I thought it might be fun to play some games… Ready people?

The Guess The Sender Game


Sorry “Someone”, I didn’t get your card this year…
(Nor did I apply to any schools.. ahem.)

The Different Meaning To ‘WTF’ Game

(In today’s game, the “w” stands for “who”)


Sorry “Amora”, whomever you might be, I didn’t read your plea for help… Hope you survived, though.

The $500 – per -week Is Not Enough Game


Sorry, “2ndChance”, I don’t click for less than !!!$14 MILLION USD!!! .. which is why I did click on the below..

The Let’s Count The Typo’s! Game

Bank of Canada – Banque de Canada
TEL/Fax: Highly confidential

Attn: Sir,

Courtesy of business opportunity, I take liberty anchored on strong desire to solicit for your assistance on this mutual beneficiary and risk free transaction with you, which I hope you give urgent attention.

To be precise; I am Dr. Huck Laman Senior Manager of Bank of Canada – Banque de Canada. In my department, we discovered an abandoned sum of US$ 43 Million(Forty Three Million United State Dollars) in an account that belongs to one of our customers who died along with his entire family in 1988 Lockerbie Pan American Airline plane crash. Since we got information about his death, we have been expecting his next of kin to come over and claim his money because we cannot release it unless somebody applied for it as next of kin or relation to the deceased as indicated in our banking procedures, but unfortunately to no avail and nobody has come forward to claim this money.

Therefore upon this discovery that I and other two officials in my department, we now decide to establish a cordial business relationship with you, hence my contacting you; We want you to purportedly present your good self as the next of kin or relation of the deceased so that we can release the fund (money) into your account for safety and subsequent disbursement since nobody is coming for it and again we don’t want the money to go into the government account as unclaimed bill .The banking law and procedures herein stipulates that any accounts abandoned or dormant for a period of some years is subject to be closed and all money contained therein will be forfeited to the government treasury account. Now it is being speculated that the above sum will be transferred into government treasury account as unclaimed fund on or before April 2011. The reason for you to present your good self as the next of kin is occasioned by the fact that the deceased customer was a foreigner.

Mode of Sharing After the successful completion of the transfer is as follows, for the role you will be expected to play in the whole exercise,  we have agreed to give you Thirty (30%) of the total sum, and 10% has been set aside for the expenses we are going to encounter by both parties in the process of this transaction and the remaining 60% shall be for my colleagues and I in support of the aforementioned, you are urged to reply this letter indicating your readiness and interest to participate in this business.

After your reply, you will be advised on the next step afterwards. I quite believe that you will protect our interest by keeping this business top secret and confidential. Your interest will be equally protected, as we must maintain maximum confidentiality.

Sorry we cannot declare our official e-mail addresses and telephone numbers due to security reasons.

Trust to hear from you on this private email address E-mail:

Yours Faithful
Dr. Huck Laman

Sorry “Dr. Huck”, I’m just not a good secret keeper.
I might have tried a little harder to be one but, anyone who knows me would have known better than to insult me with an offer of 30%. I don’t sign as “next of kin” for less than half.. and you eat the expenses.

The What Did All These Games Have In Common? Game

That’s right, you guessed it! They all arrived Christmas day.

The Internet invites the “world-wide” into your home, (.www stands for “world wide web” after all) and some of the people out there in the “world-wide” are not very nice — are scuzbuckets actually. I hope you constantly remember that.. and tell your friends too..

Well, that’s enough games for today. Thanks for playing!
(And please, let’s exercise some good, healthy “paranoid common sense” when online.)

* Original posting: 12/28/10

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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December 6, 2011 Posted by | computers, Internet, tech | , , , , | 3 Comments

A Quick Reco.. Some Email Etiquette

Folks, today I simply want to point you to an article by friend and fellow tech blogger, Rick Robinette: Tip: Bcc Protects Private Email Addresses

Did you know that if you use the Bcc field in your email client to address and send an email to multiple users, the recipients will not see whom you sent the email to?

… The benefits of using the Bcc field is simply this. You are protecting the privacy of other people.”

This is basic e-mail etiquette that everyone should know and practice. (Especially if you ever “forward” on those funny/cute animal picture FWD’s you get.) Click the link, and read more. (And then, maybe, forward the article to certain folks you know..)

** Software License Giveaway Drawing Ends Tonight **

The folks at SPAMFighter have generously donated 10 licenses for SLOW-PCFighter to me, to award to my readers.

SLOW-PCFighter is a Registry repair program which “uses the most advanced technologies available” to analyze PC errors and – as the name suggests – speed up a PC which has become slow.
For contest details (and to enter), click here.

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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September 23, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments


*New* Infected Attachment Scam Returns

Once again your Inbox is a dangerous place…

Subject: funds wired into your account are stolen

Dear bank account owner,

Funds wired into your account are stolen from innocent account holders through Identity Theft. Please check your account statement (the statement is attached to this letter) and contact your bank account manager.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation


POP QUIZ: What’s wrong with this picture? (multiple choice)
a: It came on a Sunday, and the Gov’t doesn’t work on Sundays.
b: There’s no such thing as “innocent” account holders.
c: dot exe’s are “executables” (aka “scripts” and “programs”) and make things happen on machines.. maybe bad things.

Answer: C

Folks, this is a really old attack method, and it preys upon the fact that people (“users” in Geek-speak) are unobservant (won’t notice the .exe) and uneducated (don’t know what an .exe is).

Sadly, those two ideas are pretty close to Fact, and reality hasn’t changed. And so someone is trying this old trick again. The attachment “statement.exe” is a “downloader virus“.
Open the attachment and be “pwn3d“.

Today’s free link(s):
* Top 10 things you should do to your computer–updated
* Internet and System Security – Common Sense Tips

Today’s free link, Part II: I don’t want you to think that I’m a boring and all-business geek, so today’s link is the place to get started building your digital music collection … for free. The music department at is an entirely free collection of music of all genres. Check it out. Have fun, and relax … it’s completely legal, and doesn’t use any of that questionable “file sharing”. (Ahem)

Today’s free download: Is it a game? Is it a typing tutor? 10 Finger BreakOut is a real arcade game, in which you are escaping from invaders, shooting and trying to hit balls, but don’t worry, by playing 10 Finger BreakOut you sure will be learning to type. Improve your typing skills with this free typing tutor – typing game.

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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August 2, 2010 Posted by | computers, Internet, Internet scam, PC, security, spam and junk mail, tech | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Troubleshooting Web Mail: JavaScript "Not Installed".

JavaScript Makes The Web Go ‘Round

I received a call for help with an e-mail problem. My client was getting errors when trying to access their webmail (online e-mail, such as Hotmail, Gmail, and Yahoo! Mail). Which had them quite upset, naturally, but was really no problem at all, and was quite easily fixed with a few clicks of the mouse.

My caller’s errors all referred to JavaScript – which is (short version) a programming language used extensively on the Internet; mostly to make Web pages dynamic and interactive with the viewer. Many websites rely on JavaScript to function, and Gmail and Hotmail do too.

My caller’s computer was suddenly saying that JavaScript was “not installed”, but in reality, all that had happened was it had been somehow inadvertently “disabled” (aka “turned off”), and needed to be switched on again.

Tip of the day: To fix this type of error, enable (or, re-enable) JavaScript in your Web browser.
1) Open Internet Explorer and in the upper right find the gray gear icon “Tools” menu. Click it, and then click on “Internet Options

2) Now a new window will open. Click on the “Security” tab (top), as shown below.

3) Click the “Custom level…” button.

4) Use the slider to scroll down the list of options until you come to “Active scripting“, as shown below.

5) Click on the “Enable” (or “Prompt“, if you want to be able to choose when to allow JavaScript, and have the ability to deny it) ‘radio’ button, and then click on OK, twice.

6) Close Internet Explorer and then re-launch (aka “Open”) it again.

Now JavaScript (should be) is enabled and functioning and you can surf the Web and access Webmail as you had before. Problem solved!

[note: if you found that JavaScript was already enabled, please see Internet Explorer Runtime Error!!*. I have several other how to’s on repairing your browser as well, should you need further guidance. Enter “error”, or “repair” in my Search box.]

*** A Chance To Win A Valuable Prize! ***

The folks at SYNCING.NET have generously donated six Professional Edition licenses to me, to award to my readers. SYNCING.NET is a Business Class program which enables users to sync their Microsoft Outlook data on multiple computers.

To enter the drawing, please see: Software License Giveaway: SYNCING.NET
Enter my current giveaway and (possibly) win a license!

Today’s free download: Trillian Astra
More than three years in the making, Trillian is back with a slight name change and a slew of new features. The chat client now supports Google, MySpace IM, Skype, and Facebook, as well as AIM, ICQ, MSN, Yahoo, and IRC. It  has both POP3 and IMAP e-mail checking.
Trillian now has deep hooks into Facebook and Twitter. It will automatically shorten URLs in your tweets, as well as allow direct messages, re-tweets, and replies. Twitter Trends can show up in your contact list, and you can get tweets to appear in Tooltip form. Facebook features include news feed integration, Facebook Inbox checking, and synchronized message updating in addition to Facebook IM.

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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May 18, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail, how to, IE 7, ie 8, software, troubleshooting | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Amazingly Dangerous Email: Must See To Believe (Evil) Deal of the Day

Folks, I just received an amazing (and dangerous) e-mail that my phishing filter/spam catcher did not catch – claiming to come from as one of my “notification subscriptions” –> Amazon’s Deal of the Day. It looks identical to my real notifications but…

amazon spoof

every single link is dangerous, and they’re pushing ED drugs! These hyperlinks really take you to websites titled “http:\\”. Seriously! (.ru = Russia)

Do I need tell you what will happen should you click a single link? Nothing good, I assure you!!!
Here’s more..

amazon spoof2

What are those red warning signals? They are automatically inserted by a tool I have installed on my machine, see, Why You Want WOT.

I kind of admire the craftsmanship that went into this.. this.. criminal attack. It fooled me for a while. But, sheeze: anyone else wonder how come these guys are still getting away with this? And maybe.. a bit fed up with it?

Are you listening, cyber czar?

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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April 25, 2010 Posted by | cyber crime, hackers, Internet, Internet scam | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Facebook Password Reset Confirmation! Your Support.

E-mail Attachment Delivers Virus – Old Tricks Die Hard

I got another e-mail from “Facebook support”. This one tells me that my password has been reset, and my new password is contained in the attached Zip file.
[update: I just got two more. This time from “Facebook Networks”, and “Facebook Messages”.]

“Dear user of facebook,

Because of the measures taken to provide safety to our clients, your password has been changed.
You can find your new password in attached document.

Your Facebook.”


According to Sophos, the malware inside the .zip is: Malware: Mal/TibsPk-A

Virus Spyware

“About this threat:

Mal/TibsPk-A is a malicious program that contains highly obfuscated code that has been encrypted and compressed. This program typically arrives in the form of a hoax email with an accompanying file attachment.

This program tends to:

Short version: open it and you’re thoroughly hosed.
Sophos continues..

“Fake package delivery or password reset messages trick users

This week, Mal/TibsPk-A arrived as an email attachment in a variety of ways. A typical email containing this malware can be one of the following formats:

Subject: Facebook Password Reset Confirmation! Customer Support.
Attached file: Facebook_password_<random characters>.zip
Subject: DHL Office. Please get your parcel
Attached file: DHL_Label_<random characters>.zip
Subject: Amazon Shop! Your order has been paid! Parcel NR.5014.
Attached file: Postal_label_&ltrandom characters>.zip”

two more attacks same day

two more attacks - same day

I cannot stress enough to you, Dear Reader, that cybercrime is a bigger industry than the illegal drug trade, and they are stealing billions every year. Why not? All it takes is one wrong click!

Don’t be a victim. Exercise “paranoid common sense” when online. This is just one “for instance”.. sent to tens, maybe hundreds, of thousands of e-mail addresses (I never have signed up for Facebook).
Oh, .. and visiting here regularly can help.

Unrelated: Do you like free software? Own a laptop? See my current software license giveaway: Software License Giveaway Drawing. Entering is easy.

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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March 24, 2010 Posted by | cyber crime, hackers, Internet, Internet scam, News, security, spam and junk mail | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Reader Question | How did they get my e-mail?*

Disable the Preview Pane For Safer Computing & Less Spam

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

Q: “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”.”

A: 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.oe_new
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.. (i.e., Thunderbird), and webmail (i.e., Hotmail, Gmail, 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.
The spammers (and advertisers) collect lists of these validated addresses and sell them to each other.

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.

Today’s free download: Open Office 3.0 A new version of very popular free office suite is now available. Support for Office 2007 formatting and improved PDF creation in Writer highlight the big additions for business users. A new Start Center provides a launching pad and makes it easier to switch between tools.

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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March 6, 2010 Posted by | advice, e-mail, how to, spam and junk mail | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment