Google’s Privacy Change: Not Such a Bad Thing

There have been many questions and concerns about Google’s new updated privacy policy. Last week, the Big G started posting notifications that it is going to change the way it handles customer information. Here is exactly what is happening:

Google runs a LOT of popular services. Gmail, Google Docs, Picasa, YouTube…all of these have millions (even billions!) of users. The problem is each service requires a separate account. You needed to sign up every time you wanted to use a different service, meaning each service required its own username, password, and set of terms and privacy conditions. Continue reading “Google’s Privacy Change: Not Such a Bad Thing”

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7 Tips to Keep Your Smartphone Safe

Smartphones are great! Apparently I’m not the only one that thinks so…more people are using smartphones to connect to the Internet than PC’s in key markets. Consumers have discovered the convenience of having mobile “mini-computers” and are using them to take full advantage of apps and access to instant information. Unfortunately the scent of success has attracted the attention of Internet predators, so a focus on mobile security is becoming increasingly important. The easy access to information we enjoy on our phones can be a prime target for hackers taking advantage of this new frontier. Keep these 7 tips in mind to keep yourself protected when you’re on the go: Continue reading “7 Tips to Keep Your Smartphone Safe”

Collaboration with Google Calendar – Make Scheduling Easy!

One of the best things you can do to organize time is employ a calendar, as many of us already do. While we tend to be fully aware of what our day ahead holds, those around us generally have no idea what our schedule looks like. Google Calendar overcomes this with easy to use share settings, allowing you to share the details of your calendar with friends, family, co-workers, even your entire organization. This makes communication and timekeeping much more efficient. Continue reading “Collaboration with Google Calendar – Make Scheduling Easy!”

Twelve Easy Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy

Many people think the Internet is full of boogeymen waiting to jump them after every click.  I think this is why so many users have trouble with computers.  They don’t trust them.  They’re convinced that one mis-click will end Social Security, start a war with Brazil, and all things chocolate will turn into vanilla.

There’s a widely-held belief that computers have this much power.

The truth is, the Internet isn’t all that bad.  It’s actually the user that has all the power.  Part of the  perceived problem is caused by common sense (or the suspension of).   Something happens where a user’s inhibitions go out the window while they’re online.  It’s like their mouse is injecting tequila into their bloodstream, and after a while —   WOOHOO!!!  Anything goes!  I’ll tell anyone anything!

The other part of the perceived problem is complacency.  If you’re in your pajamas, in your office, or better yet — in your pajamas while in your office, you feel safe and secluded.  Nothing can reach you there.  You start getting lazy about update notices, stop reading things through before clicking on them…and then BAM!  You’re nailed.

Vigilance is the key.  There is no vacation from following safe practices.  Just follow these twelve steps and keep yourself out of trouble: Continue reading “Twelve Easy Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy”

Password Security – You Need To Care

TOAST.net recently began requiring our customers to use a minimum 8 character password due to security enhancements we’re implementing. When contacting our users that were sporting such classic passwords as “abc123“, “fred“, or my favorite: “none“, I was a bit surprised at some of the responses we were receiving.  People seem to be reluctant to choose a better password for strange reasons:

  • I’ve been using the same password for years!
  • I can’t remember another password!
  • I don’t care about my password, there’s nothing important in there anyway!

I thought I would take some time to explain why password security is critical on any Internet account, despite it’s importance. Continue reading “Password Security – You Need To Care”