Yikes, Are you still running Windows Vista?!

Windows Vista has officially gotten the boot from Microsoft as of April 11, 2017, and experts are suggesting you upgrade as soon as possible. The former CEO of Microsoft described Windows Vista as his biggest regret and now the company is finally cutting all support to Vista effective immediately.

If you are still running Windows Vista don’t worry it isn’t going to just abruptly stop working, but without the support of Microsoft or any of it’s updates or security patches we suggest you update to Windows 10 and we can help you do that. If you don’t upgrade then you are potentially putting your computer at risk of hacks, malware and other security risks and viruses.

Microsoft explained:
“As of April 11, 2017, Windows Vista customers are no longer receiving new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options, or online technical content updates from Microsoft. Microsoft has provided support for Windows Vista for the past 10 years, but the time has come for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources towards more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences.”

As they put it nicely, Windows Vista isn’t the best software to be running especially now that Microsoft doesn’t offer support for it. Also, as more software and hardware companies begin to optimize and upgrade for the future of Windows, you can expect to encounter more apps and devices that do not work with Windows Vista.

We suggest upgrading your current computer to Windows 10, or if your current computer is not capable of running Windows 10 then it’s probably time to shop for a new computer. Either way, we can help you with this process and if you are not sure if you are running Vista then give us a call or drop by the office.

Monday – 8am – 5pm
Tuesday – Friday – 8am – 7pm
Saturday – 9am – 2pm

For any questions, please call our store at 806-350-TECH.

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10% OFF computer repair special!

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Back of Mail Out

We’re getting ready to mail out a promotional flyer but we don’t want to leave our digital friends out of the fun! With this in mind, we’re making the included coupon available online as well! To take advantage of this offer, simply print out the coupon and bring it into the store to be applied to your residential computer repair. Don’t need any residential computer service right now? That’s okay, just send it on to a friend in need! Offer expires May 31st, 2017, one coupon per person.
And, as if that isn’t enough; we’re also offering the first 200 customers who take advantage of this promotional discount on our residential computer repair service a $10 Lunch Gift Card to Public House located at 3333 S Coulter St. in Amarillo.

Now Offering:
• Computer repair for your laptop or desktop computer
• Unlimited backups for residential computers at $89 per computer per year
• Anti-virus for residential computers at $60 per computer per year
• Managed IT services for small or large businesses in the Texas Panhandle
• And much more!

*** New Extended Hours Starting May 1st ***
Monday – 8am – 5pm
Tuesday – Friday – 8am – 7pm
Saturday – 9am – 2pm

For any questions, please call our store at 806-350-TECH.

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“OK Google. Is My Virtual Assistant Secure?”

For years, people have cringed over the idea of the government or the FBI wire tapping phones or browsing internet history and other basic invasion of privacy. The idea of cybercriminals stealing your personal data from your computer or mobile device is an ongoing threat. But how many people are considering the danger & security of a personal assistant such as Alexa?

To give you a good example of how fragile these things are, Burger King created a commercial in which one of the employees says at the end “Ok Google. What’s a Whopper burger?” Triggering the Google home assistant to then read off a very descriptive Wikipedia ad that would hopefully persuade the listener to go buy a Whopper. A little invasive, right? People were not excited about this ad, and Google had to block that certain command, yet people are gladly putting these devices in their homes everyday.

We feel that you should keep in mind a few things about Alexa and Google home before you install into your house, such as, the fact that virtual assistants lack security. What happens when hackers figure out how to subliminally hack the airwaves and tell your device to deposit your money into someone else’s account? How low of an audio level will the device accept and is there a way to test this? There seems to be no real test or standard as to how these devices work and that seems to open the door to a lot of security issues.

These personal assistants know everything. They know what you’re watching, what you’re listening to, what you’re searching, photographing and buying. We are really just adding to Google’s empire of data collection and who is keeping track of what is being sold or used of that information?

Considering personal assistants fit into the category of smart home devices linked to a server, its important to consider they may be at risk for IoT (Internet of Things) attacks as well. We’ve seen these types of attacks being used to target companies & not necessarily for spying on home users, but the main goal is the same. Hackers want to see and hear your private data so they can use that information against you to benefit themselves.

A few tips to those who chose to install a Siri, Alexa, Google Home device:

+ If you are not currently using your personal assistant, it’s wise to mute it or put it to sleep so that it’s not ‘always listening’.
+ Don’t ever connect sensitive accounts to your home assistant, or connect multiple accounts.
+ Clear out old recordings and search history regularly.
+ Be sure you know all your settings and permissions you are granting your home assistant and consider tightening those.

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