Never, EVER pay with Gift Cards!

Never, EVER pay with Gift Cards!

Over the past few years we have seen a large increase in scams where a person on the phone demands payment in the form of Gift Cards. No matter who they say they are with, if they request that payment be made in the form of gift cards, they are a scammer. PERIOD, End of Story.

What is Streaming?

What is Streaming?

I get this question quite often. Streaming is defined as: a method of transmitting or receiving data (especially video and audio material) over a computer network as a steady, continuous flow, allowing playback to start while the rest of the data is still being...
FACT: Microsoft Will NOT Call You!

FACT: Microsoft Will NOT Call You!

If someone calls you out of the blue and claims they are with Microsoft, JUST HANG UP. Since I wrote my article titled “I want my refund” (Sept 2018) the frequency of these scam phone calls has increased, and the cost is mounting. The worst case I have encountered was...
Should I consider a Refurbished Computer?

Should I consider a Refurbished Computer?

For the budget minded shopper, a refurbished computer may be a way to get as much as 50% off retail. As with any deal, you need to read the fine print. A refurbished computer could be a product returned to the manufacturer, or possibly one that is “off-lease”. The...
Photos – From cell phone to computer

Photos – From cell phone to computer

Lately I have been getting a lot of questions about the “best” way to get photos from a cell phone to a computer. There are two basic approaches; Direct Wired connection and Over the Air transfer. With the Direct Wired connection, we connect the cell phone using the...
Is it time to consider Windows 10?

Is it time to consider Windows 10?

If you are one of the many folks still running Windows 7, you are now in the minority. Early last month it was announced that Windows 10 installs now exceed the number of Windows 7 installs still active. Many of my clients are still running Windows 7. Normally this is...
What should I do with my old computer?

What should I do with my old computer?

When we buy new computers (or any technology for that matter) we are left with the old device to dispose of. In St Johns County, you are not supposed to put it in the trash, or the recycling for normal pickup.

Password Cornucopia

Password Cornucopia

In my business, it is unusual that a client has all of their passwords documented, up to date, and handy. Typically, the client and I spend about 20% of the time on a service call figuring out or resetting passwords.

Driver Update Utilities … Who needs them?

Driver Update Utilities … Who needs them?

You have probably seen the ads on TV or received advertising email for some sort of Driver Update Utility. They make claims of “Automating” the process of making sure your computer has the latest drivers.
But wait a minute:
Windows 10 Updates include any updates for the drivers needed for your computer.
Windows 10 handles this automatically for you.

I want my Refund!

I want my Refund!

As I wrote this article, 3 clients called to say that they have fallen prey to a refund scam. They got an email or a phone call that promised a refund, and that they should call to claim their refund. Today, as I finalized this article I got a call from a client saying that every day for 2 weeks, she has received multiple calls saying that she was owed a refund.

The Last Line of Defense

The Last Line of Defense

August 2018 Article In this last month I have seen an upswing in fraudulent “tech support” scams. One client asked me “Why doesn’t Apple stop these guys from using their Logo and scamming me?” I was unable to give an answer that made the...
Thinking about switching to a Macintosh?

Thinking about switching to a Macintosh?

Customers are asking about switching to Macintosh with increasing regularity. They might have heard that there are not as many viruses, or they are tired of dealing with Windows update issues. Some are considering an Apple product because their children or...
Windows 10 Updates – Made Easier

Windows 10 Updates – Made Easier

With the changes we see in Windows 10, probably the most confounding is automatic updates. We can no longer tell Windows not to update. Moreover, the updates can mess with our settings and occur at inconvenient times. It is frustrating to sit down in front of your...
Computer Repair Gone Wrong

Computer Repair Gone Wrong

I have a customer on Anastasia Island who decided to take her laptop to a store-front computer repair shop. They told her that the motherboard was damaged, and it would cost hundreds to fix her laptop. So, she bought a new computer, and paid them to transfer her files...
Anti-Virus – More is not better

Anti-Virus – More is not better

April 2018 Edition
When we consider protection, we tend to think that more is better. In many cases this is true. Such as your car having locks plus an alarm, your money in a bank plus FDIC insurance on those bank deposits, or a 300+ pound center plus several large linesmen guarding your favorite quarterback on an important play.

Computer virus protection is different, and more than one application is actually much worse. They will fight one another in several ways, which can prevent the virus protection you need, and slow your computer down.

Tax Season Scams – Recognizing the telltale signs

Tax Season Scams – Recognizing the telltale signs

March 2018 Edition
Thousands of people have lost millions of dollars and their personal information to tax scams. Scammers use the regular mail, telephone, or email to set up individuals, businesses, payroll and tax professionals.
The IRS doesn’t initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages or social media channels to request personal or financial information. Recognize the telltale signs of a scam.

Password Recovery – lessons you don’t want to learn

Password Recovery – lessons you don’t want to learn

February 2018 Edition
Password recovery or reset often requires answers to questions that were answered when the account was set up, possibly years ago. Many questions are not well thought out. Such as; “What country would you like to visit?” This may not be the same answer forever. If you answered this sort of question 10 years ago, you may have different travel dreams now.

Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard Shortcuts

January 2018 edition: Often while helping clients with their computers I am asked “How did you do that?” This usually happens when I use a Keyboard Shortcut that saves me from having to use the mouse to click on something to get something done.

New technology this season?

New technology this season?

December 2017 edition: Black Friday and Cyber Monday are behind us, and the holiday giving season is directly ahead. For many this means new computers, tablets, or cell phones. Now we need to address getting our important documents and files moved from an old device to the new one. It also means that we need to think about how to best dispose of the old equipment.