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  • Apr 27 / 2014
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Webcam - Computer Repair Lake Havasu City
PC Repair

Your Web Cam is Watching You – Computer Repair Lake Havasu City

Our laptops and computer camera connect us with friends and family that are far away.  They are a great way to share with your loved ones, but they can also pose as a security risk.  Check out this article by ZoneAlarm:

A few clicks of the mouse, and your webcam is activated and ready to be used. But have you considered the possibility that someone else could be watching you through your own webcam? The thought of this probably sends chills down your spine, and it should, as this is very real- and extremely creepy.

How Webcams Get Hacked
Hackers utilize a type of software called remote access tool (RAT) that allows them to remotely access a computer as if they were physically there. Though RATs were designed for legal purposes, like allowing a technician to remotely access a user’s computer to troubleshoot problems without having to physically be there, hackers exploit this software for their own benefit.

Typically, a hacker lures an unsuspecting user into clicking on a link, opening a picture or email attachment, visiting a specific website, or downloading some software. After the user falls for one of these, the RAT software is secretly installed onto the user’s computer. The hacker now has remote access to the user’s computer.

Preventing Your Webcam from Being Hacked
Many articles recommend covering the lens of the webcam with a piece of paper to prevent hackers from spying on you. But doing that alone is brushing the real problem under a rug. Having your webcam hacked means your PC has been compromised by some malware, and you need to take immediate action to get rid of it.

Fortunately, here are some easy things you can do that can prevent your computer from being compromised in the first place.

Don’t be click-happy
Hackers lure victims into installing RAT software onto their PC by disguising links, pictures, or email attachments as something desirable, such as free music, movies, or desktop wallpapers. Be wary of suspicious websites that offer similar items. Also be cautious about clicking on shortened links you may find on social media sites.

Equip your computer with an antivirus and two-way firewall
Having an antivirus and two-way firewall is minimum security any PC should be equipped with. An up-to-date and active antivirus helps to detect and remove malware from infecting your computer. A two-way firewall monitors inbound and outbound traffic to-and-from your computer.

Be cautious of tech support offering remote assistance
Hackers may physically contact you by claiming there are problems with your computer. They’ll try to persuade you to install a program that allows them remote access to your computer, so that they can “fix” the problem. Simply ignore calls from those who claim they are tech support.

Secure your wireless connection
A hacker can easily hack into unsecure Wi-Fi networks with a laptop, antenna, and widely available software. Don’t make it easy for them. Secure your wireless connection with a strong and complex password.

Disable Windows Remote Access
Though most RATs deployed by malware are custom tools, disabling Windows Remote Assistance and Remote Desktop is one thing you can do to prevent hackers from remotely accessing your computer.

To disable Remote Assistance and Remote Desktop for Windows 7, follow these steps:
1. Click on Start and find Computer

2. Right-click on Computer and select Properties
Right-click Computer

3. Click on Remote settings on the left-hand side
Remote Settings

4a. Under the Remote tab, uncheck “Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer.”

4b. Under Remote tab, click on “Don’t allow connections to this computer”
Remote Properties

5. Click OK


Do you think you may have a virus?  Don’t wait to fix it, it only get’s worse!  Call us today 928-230-4922

  • Dec 11 / 2013
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PC Repair

Online Risks to Avoid this Holiday Season, Part I

Top ‘o the morning readers!Online Risks During the Holidays


As you might know, we are computer geeks. With that said, computer issues are probably the last thing on your mind this time of year, and that’s why we’re here.


Check out this great article from Kiplinger below:


“10 Online Risks to Avoid During the Holidays


‘Tis the season to be scammed. Identity thieves, computer hackers and fraudsters tend to increase their efforts over the holidays because more consumers are online purchasing gifts and looking for deals, says Dave Aitel, CEO of Immunity Inc, which creates penetration testing products (ie hacking tools). Scammers also take advantage of people’s generosity during the season of giving.


Aitel says that people need to watch out for these ten threats that could put them at risk of becoming victims of fraud or ID theft during the holidays.


1. Clickjacking. This popular Facebook scam involves online games that require you to click something that moves across your computer screen. You think you’re clicking on a dancing Santa, but, in reality, you could be clicking on a concealed link that might perform actions such as making your Facebook profile information public or giving scammers access to information stored on your computer. So don’t click on those dancing Santas (or any other game that pops up on your computer or gets passed around on Facebook).




2. Drive-by downloads. This is a term that refers to downloading something that you didn’t realize was a malicious program or a download that occurs without your knowledge. This might happen as you are browsing the Web during the holidays and and visit unfamiliar sites with ads that promise deep discounts on items. If the site isn’t legitimate, the ads probably aren’t, either. Also avoid sites that require you to download a “codec” to view a video because this is malicious software.




3. Infections from legitimate sites. Now is prime time for hackers to infect sites that get more traffic during the holidays with pop-up ads that have viruses. Aitel recommends installing an ad blocker on your browser, such as the free Adblock Plus, or to use Chrome as your browser because it’s harder for hackers to infiltrate.




4. E-mail phishing. Your inbox might fill up with donation requests or holiday deals over the coming weeks. If these e-mails come from people or groups you’re not familiar with, delete them because they’re likely attempts to steal your personal information or con you out of big bucks. Also watch out for e-mails claiming to come from your credit-card issuer. You might assume that they’re legitimate if you’ve been using your card frequently to make holiday purchases. But don’t respond to any e-mails saying that there’s a problem with your card. Instead, call your company directly using the number printed on the back of your card. See Protect Yourself From New Phishing Schemes for more information.




5. Text-message phishing (or smishing). Be wary of text messages with donation requests, notices of too-good-to-be-true deals or even gift card offers from major retailers. There’s a good chance that they’re fake. If you respond, you may be prompted to divulge personal information, such as your credit card number.”



…to be continued…



(Computer Image Credit: Flickr/ miss karen)



Lake Havasu City PC Repair



  • Dec 09 / 2013
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PC Repair

New Computer Virus Attacks Online Banking Websites Just in Time for the Holidays

Howdy folks, happy Monday!Online Banking


During holiday season and holiday shopping, chances are we are checking our online banking accounts a lot more often. Well we have some bad news, there is a new computer virus that is actually attacking online banking sites!


Check out the article from IBT below:


“New Computer Virus Targets Banking Sites to Steal Your Info, Experts Warn


Just in time for the holidays, researchers have found a new virus that uses your computer and online bankingsites to get your information and access your accounts.



It all started with a post on an underground cybercrime site on July 18. On offer: a program that could be used to break into “about 100 banks” and attack “any bank in the country.”



Experts at Kaspersky Lab, a Russian computer security company, began to look into it.



In November, they noticed hackers were buying and selling information to help open bank accounts meant to manage stolen funds.



Hacker Post




A post on a hacker forum about buying and selling databases of information used to access bank accounts and documents (KasperSky)



By mid-November, they had recorded several thousand infections around the world. And it will likely spread even faster over the holidays.



“We can expect to see mass Neverquest attacks toward the end of the year, which should ultimately lead to more users becoming victims of online cash theft,” wrote Sergey Golovanov. a researcher at the lab in a blog post on Tuesday.



“In light of Neverquest’s self-replication capabilities, the number of users attacked could increase considerably over a short period of time.”



The virus, called Trojan-Banker.Win32/64.Neverquest (or Neverquest for short) is particularly dangerous because of how fast it can spread.



A Trojan is a kind of computer virus that gains access to a computer system by appearing benign. It then infects the website or computer and performs its task. This one steals banking information.



It modifies the content of websites opened in Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox. It leads users to modified websites that look like originals but instead send all their username or password information back to the hackers. They can then use virtual network computing, which allows someone to access another person’s computer from anywhere in the world. This way, they hack into user bank accounts without setting off any alarms, since it seems like the person is logging in through their own computer.



It has already targeted 28 banking and online payment sites in Germany, Italy, Turkey and India. But it is engineered to search for more. It searches webpages for keywords such as “balance,” “checking account,” and “account summary.”



Golovanov said that the Fidelity Investment site appears to be a top target for the program. It is one of the largest mutual fund investment firms, and has a variety of ways for clients to access their accounts online.



“This gives malicious users the chance to not only transfer cash funds to their own accounts, but also to play the stock market using the accounts and money of Neverquest victims,” he wrote.



The virus also harvests data to access social media accounts. Some sites include Skype, Flickr, Myspace, Farmville, Zynga, Facebook, Twitter and others.



Emails attachments are another way Neverquest can get onto your computer. In this case, users can protect themselves by not opening suspicious emails or messages.



Some malicious attachments have names such as “travel-00034.jpg.zip” or even “light details_united airlines.pdf.zip.”



Another way to protect information is to use a virtual keyboard. This is a program that allows users to type in passwords or usernames using a clickable keyboard on the screen instead of typing, since the virus is able to log keystrokes on a real keyboard once it gets into the computer.



But that still isn’t enough.



“Protection against threats such as Neverquest requires more than just standard antivirus,” said Golovanov.



Users should have some kind of solution that secures not only their computer but online transactions and prevent manipulation by other applications.



This virus is an attempt to fill a few “holes” in the cyber black market, according to Golovanov. He wrote that after several criminal cases associated with bank website viruses were wrapped up, new users are creating new technologies.



“This threat is relatively new, and cybercriminals still aren’t using it to its full capacity,” he warns.



He expects that Neverquest will spread very fast, especially over the upcoming holiday season when malware use generally spikes.”



(Image Credit: Flickr/ playerx)


Lake Havasu City PC Repair Virus Removal

  • Dec 06 / 2013
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PC Repair

Computer Virus Attacks Increase During Holiday Season

Howdy NSquared readers!Holiday Shopping



The holiday season is here and in full swing.



Baking, decorating, hot cocoa, holiday shopping and computer attacks are on the rise. Wait..what? Computer attacks you say?



Check out the article from Perry Hall below:




“Viruses Attacks Increase as We Approach The Holiday Shopping Season



Well it is almost holiday shopping season. During this period; many people opt to online for doing a good majority of their Christmas shopping. Virus hijackers like to take advantage of the extra online traffic by writing new virus code and infecting thousands of sites in order to get their malware out into the wild. We see it happen year after year. One of the most aggressive of these infections is ransom ware called the FBI virus. This virus is brutal once it gets into your system. Depending on how long it stays in your system, your computer can be locked down sometimes even in safe mode with no easy way to get into your operating system. The fake screen that pops up looks very real and can be intimidating for many people. Essentially the virus lets you believe that you are committing a  violation and you need to pay $200.00. The money is usually requested to be made as a money pak from Walgreen’s or Wal Mart. As real as it may appear, it is a fake program. Do Not Pay the $200.00 as the screen will still remain on your computer and the virus will still be there.



One of the worst aspects of the FBI virus is that it is almost never stopped by anti-virus software. It appears to be most common with video sites and X rated websites.



In addition we have seen an increase in exe hijackers and the system restore virus that actually changes the configuration of your files so that you think they have been erased. These virus variants are a bit easier to remove but registry fixes often have to be implemented in order to get the machine back to a normal state. Most of these virus attacks will take several steps to completely remove. It can almost never be done just by a simple scan from your anti-virus program.”



(Image Credit: Flickr/ Alan Cleaver)
Lake Havasu City PC Repair Virus Removal



  • Nov 27 / 2013
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Lake Havasu PC Repair
PC Repair

Lake Havasu City PC Repair: 4 Signs Your PC Needs a Tune-Up

Howdy NSquared readers!

As we all know, eventually our beloved PC’s need tune-ups. But how do you know if the time has come for yours? Check out these four signs from Aol below:


“Signs Your Computer Needs a Tune-up



…Here are a few signs that could indicate that a tune-up is in order:




Slow Computer

Your system can be slow for lots of reasons, but often there’s a simple computer fix. Data clutter, insufficient memory or system resources and failing hardware are the most often-occurring causes of a slowdown. Sometimes, if you clear your browsing history and clean up the Windows registry, you can fix your PC. However, if you’re not a skilled PC technician, you could create additional problems.




Error Messages

An application on your computer system may have its own bugs or problems that are causing error messages to appear on your screen. A PC tune-up searches the causes of the error messages and can often eliminate them.




PC Freezes, Crashes and Shutdowns

It’s always when you’ve just done your best work that your computer crashes, right? PC crashes or freezes can be caused by too many open applications, too much data or not enough memory to support the running functions. It’s important to periodically tune up your PC in order to clean out old data and applications that are using memory unnecessarily and causing a computer slowdown.




Long Start-up and Shut-down times

A PC tune-up can repair hard-drive fragmentation, fix the Windows registry and delete useless files. These problems can be causes of your computer’s taking a long time to start up or shut down. You might have applications launching at start-up that you don’t realize are there and they are grabbing memory and slowing down the whole system.


Whether you inadvertently downloaded something that’s troublesome or your computer is simply aging and needs freshening up, a PC tune-up is a great idea. Keeping track of scheduled maintenance for your computer will benefit you just as much do those tune-ups you do for your car… booting up your computer to find it’s not working properly is just as aggravating as a car that won’t start…”



(Image Credit: Flickr/ Randy Pertiet)



Lake Havasu PC Repair




  • Nov 25 / 2013
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PC Repair

Lake Havasu City PC Repair: You Might Have a Virus If…

Happy Monday folks!Computer Virus



Is your computer running the way it should be? If you aren’t sure, check out this article from Microsoft below:



“How can I tell if my computer has a virus?



If you can answer “yes” to any of the following questions, your computer might have a virus.



Is your computer running very slowly? A common symptom of a virus is much slower than normal computer performance. However, there can be other reasons for slow performance, including a hard disk that needs defragmenting, a computer that needs more memory (RAM), or the existence of spyware or adware. For more information about spyware, see How to tell if your computer is infected with spyware.



Are you getting unexpected messages, or are programs starting automatically? Some viruses can cause damage to Windows or some of your programs. The results of this damage might include messages appearing unexpectedly, programs starting or closing automatically, or Windows shutting down suddenly.



Is your modem or hard disk working overtime? An e‑mail virus works by sending many copies of itself by e‑mail. One indicator of this is that the activity light on your broadband or external modem is constantly lit; another is the sound of your computer’s hard disk continually working. These are not always symptoms of a computer virus, but when combined with other problems, can indicate a virus infection…”



(Image Credit: Flickr/ssoosay)




Lake Havasu City PC Repair Virus Removal

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