Fred McCubbin - The Leading Real Estate Technology Coach and Speaker
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Smart phones are becoming the main stay in mobile communications. I am using my iPhone every day for text messaging, checking email, and using useful apps in addition to making calls. Many of my clients ask me about their smart phones, and the topic I want to cover today is smart phone security.

Security Smart Phones

IPhones, Android powered phones, Blackberries, and other smart phones are starting to develop just as much utility as your standard laptop. People can now browse the internet, check their email, get directions, listen to music and even befuddle amusing animated cats all from the palm of their hand thanks to their smart phones. With all this data being streamed one has to wonder how secure it all is. With assorted media outlets bringing to light various privacy issues, security vulnerabilities and ability to spy on your person through the power of your phone has many of our clients wonder what they can do to make their phone more secure! Here are a few tips to help make sure when you use your smart phone, you are using it securely.

  1. Know the apps you use intimately: You should do your share of research before grabbing a new app on your smart phone. Does the app require login and password? Does the app constantly stream data and updates to your phone? Does the app hold any personal or financial information? Just because everyone is using it doesn’t mean it doesn’t have some hidden risks. Make sure the app provider has a privacy, terms and conditions statement that you can check to see if the app constantly streams to you or if it holds any of your valuable account data. Don’t bog your smart phone down with a ton of apps as not only does this compromise performance and battery life but also can open you up to more security threats.
  2. Use strong passwords and don’t save your passwords in your phone: Although inconvenient at times, having a strong password (at least 6 characters, using numbers, letters, capitalization and punctuation if available) is your first line of defense when securing your smart phone (or any other computing device). Make sure you memorize these passwords, and that they are not written in plain sight. If at all possible, for even more security, get into the habit of entering your password every time in order to login or launch an app. If your phone were ever infiltrated or hijacked this will ensure they do not get an all-access pass to all your data, accounts and apps.
  3. Look into Remote Wipe options: If your phone were ever stolen, your data could very well be compromised. Your accounts, passwords, financial information and your very identity could be at risk! That’s why it is a smart move to research any Remote Wiping options your phone or carrier service may have. Remote Wipe is the ability to wipe out the data on your phone remotely in case it was stolen or lost. A few third-party providers include Lookout Mobile Security, NotifyMDM and Zenprise. Apple has their own service through their MobileMe/Cloud service.
  4. Consider an antivirus for your phone: Who would ever have thought there would be a day that your phone would need to have an antivirus program? That time is now, as more and more people are using smart phones so are the hackers catching on to the fact that smart phones are a lot easier to infiltrate than their PC desktop brethren. You may want to consider an antivirus program for your smart phone. The aforementioned Lookout Mobile Security provides some protection against viruses, spyware and malware on your smart phone. The security giants are also developing mobile security services such as AVG and Symantec. Do your research and see which one would work best for your phone.

Dead Phone

Content for this article was taken from my company website, www.NewWebExperts.com.

Protect your computer and your data

I have an active computer consulting team in the Palm Springs – Southern California area. So I get to see first hand the many threats and problems clients are experiencing. Recently there is a rising number identity and e-fraud cases. In light of this I thought I should discuss some safety tips in regards to e-fraud, identity theft and similar computer threats.

Safety Tip #1) Protect your computer: Make sure your computer is protected with a valid antivirus and anti-spyware program. Keeping your computer clean of bugs helps go a long way to keeping your identity and information safe.

Strong Protection and PasswordsSafety Tip #2) Use Strong Passwords: Most computer security experts agree that one of the leading causes of identity theft and having your accounts hacked is by having a vulnerable password. You should follow the guidelines that the website or service has for creating passwords but also make sure it has numbers and even capitalized letters. This makes it harder for your password to be guessed or hacked.

 

Safety Tip #3) Learn to ID a scam or phish scheme: Opening a phony email or clicking on an infected link can easily infect your computer with a virus or involve you in a phishing attempt to steal your identity. Even worse your private information may be leaked and your accounts compromised. Be sure not to open suspicious email, even if they come from someone you know. Most companies will not request your personal or security information through email, so always call your banks or other financial institutions if you get a strange email claiming it’s from them.

Online Fraud Can Hit Smart Phones

Content for this article was taken from my company website, www.NewWebExperts.com.

 

Online SearchAnyone who’s done an online search will notice that search engines are beginning to localize your search results. You may often get a map or directory of local businesses or locations relating to your search. If people do not find you through your website directly, they may find you under a business map location, business listing or directory. This makes getting your business listed online is one of the best ways to get your business noticed on the world wide web.

Now you may ask, “How do I get my business listed online?”. Well, the truth is you may already be listed. If your business has been publicly established for a while, your business may currently be listed in certain directory websites. The larger directories such as manta.com and national.citysearch.com may have your business listed as part of public information. Try searching directories such as these, and if you find your business you should see if you can claim the listing since you are the business owner. There will be a verification process to prevent fraud and some directories may charge a fee, but most are free. Grabbing control of your business listing and making sure essential information such as address, contact information and website url is kept up-to-date.

Google Places and MapsMapquest

Most map business locations will require a sign up and verification process to list your business at your address. Google Maps, Google Places, Yahoo, Map Quest are some of the most popular online map services you should consider.

Content for this article was taken from my company website, www.NewWebExperts.com.

I'm a fan of technology. So I'm constantly finding new gadgets and useful tech to improve my business. I look for quality at an affordable price. The best place I've found to find high-quality computer parts and consumer electronics is NewEgg.com.

NewEgg.com

Whether you are a computer consultant on the New Web Experts team or just a regular consumer who likes tech products, NewEgg.com should be your source for computer and consumer electronics. The NewEgg.com site is just like most online retailers, offering regular deals, great products and affordable prices. What sets NewEgg.com apart from the rest is that its community of users fuels the site with regular feedback, reviews and recommendations. Even if you know nothing about a particular product, if someone has bought it, you’ll be sure to find a review. This helps weed out bad computer parts and products and makes sure that the best RAM, hard drives and computer fans are found.

Content for this article was taken from my company website, www.NewWebExperts.com.

A few of the areas of expertise New Web Experts focuses on are computer consulting, computer security, and computer repair. Our knowledgeable and friendly staff has had many years of experience and training. We’ve seen many common issues plaguing home computers and some of the worst offenders we’ve found have been toolbars.

Too many Toolbars

Nearly everyone who browses the internet on a regular basis has run into a toolbar or two. You may be running one right now and may have never noticed it before! That’s because toolbars integrate themselves on your most favorite browsers such as: Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari, by adding extra features and buttons to the top of your browser making it seem as if it’s a part of your browser. They are often snuck in with other programs or updates, and if you are not careful, you will install a toolbar without knowing until it's too late. While some of these toolbars can offer some useful features, overall toolbars are to be avoided and should be removed as soon as possible. Here are some reasons why you should avoid toolbars and - if they get on your system – should remove them.

  1. Tool bars slow down your internet browser. It’s proven that toolbars take up extra resources and bandwidth when you surf the net. Wondering why it takes so long to load your favorite websites? It may not be the website or your connection, but toolbars that are eating up your internet speed.

  2. Toolbars can be exploited and even hacked. Because they need internet access to operate, toolbars can easily be infiltrated by spyware and hackers as a backdoor into your system, circumventing any of your antivirus or firewall programs because the toolbar was getting internet access.

  3. Many toolbars are actually spyware. Toolbars such as Freeze, CouponBar, MySearchBar, and more, are actually considered spyware and will need to be removed with a spyware scanning tool in order to be removed completely. These toolbars not only start to eat up your internet resources, but they also proceed to track your website browsing and may even launch pop-ups, redirect your search results or hijack your browser!

Unselect Toolbar Installation Options

Content for this article was taken from my company website, www.NewWebExperts.com.

 

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