Remote Support

At these extreme times of self-isolating or social distancing, I thought I should remind everyone that there are a lot of computer/laptop problems I can fix remotely. That’s to say it is not necessary for me to visit! I log onto your PC using some clever software and then I can control it as if I was with you.

Two things are required for me to be able to do this: firstly, you need to have internet access and secondly, I need your help to get me connected up.

(For TalkTalk customers, there is a problem whereby TalkTalk have blocked all remote access to their customer PCs i.e. everything I have mentioned above I cannot do! It is necessary to log into your TalkTalk account and turn off the Spam Protection feature before Remote Support can be provided.)

For many their laptops/computers have taken on a new purpose; a lifeline. For all those people I have met over the years and said of their PC, “What you know and use it for now may change in the future”: this is somewhat extreme, but is the sort of thing I was referring to.

If you think I can help, please ask. I will do my best to assist in any way I can. I would only ask to please bear with Fiona and I as we work through your messages, while at the same time supporting our own older family members.

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End of the road for Windows 7

It’s almost the end of the road for Windows 7.

Over the last year I have moved many people off the soon to be unsupported operating system onto Windows 10 and, for some, it has been like losing an old friend.

Truth is none of us like change, but if it is managed in the right way and things are set up in a familiar way, then the change can actually be for the better. Not least if you have just got something that is so much quicker than the slow old thing you just said goodbye to.

Microsoft stop providing patches and security updates specific to Windows 7 on 14th January 2020. This doesn’t mean Windows 7 will suddenly become unusable, but it does mean that over time the criminals of the world will focus on Windows 7 computers in order to capture email addresses, passwords, bank account details, credit card numbers, etc. It’s worth their while to do so as there will still be millions of people sticking with Windows 7.

So far I have only advised two of my customers that sticking with Windows 7 is ok for them. Neither of them make purchases online and the only password they have is for their email. For everybody else, computers are now essential day to day tools, which allow for communication, purchasing, the management of finances and administration, and a host of other tasks. These are the people I am advising to get off Windows 7 as soon as possible when the support stops.

What to get next? Hard to give general advice, but be prepared to spend £400 to £500 on your next computer or laptop. There are reasons PCs are cheap and it usually has a lot to do with performance.

And when will we be moving from Windows 10? Never, if you believe the literature, but 3 months is a long time in the world of technology, so who knows what could happen in a few years.

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Threatening “I have hacked you” emails

Just thought I would pass comment on this new round of spam in circulation. I receive these sorts of emails all the time. This is the first four lines of the one I received this week:

“Your account was infected! Modify your pswd right this moment!
You might not know me me and you obviously are probably interested why you are receiving this electronic message, proper?
I’m ahacker who burstyour emailand devicesnot so long ago.
Never try to get in touch with me or try to find me, in fact it’s hopeless, because I forwarded you this message from YOUR hacked account.”

I can confidently reassure you that if you receive one of these emails then no-one has hacked your email, no-one has been “watching” you and no-one has been recording your activities.

These emails simply play on people’s insecurities about technology, using news worthy words like “hack” in order to create fear.

If this was an email from a former Gambian General who has $4,000,000 he wants to give you a share of to get it out of his country, you would delete the message out of hand. These “threatening” emails carry no more weight, but because they pick away at things that are real, e.g. they have sent it from YOUR hacked account, people start to wonder if it is really genuine.

Simply delete and move on.

I hope this helps re-assure those of you who might have received something like this and been worried by it.

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