3 Things Your IT Professional Wishes You Knew

The dreaded blue screen, lost data, a malfunctioning printer: all of these have one thing in common, they are going to make you want to tear your hair out. More than likely, you are going to need the help of an IT professional to get things back up and running, but you’re dreading the call. Believe it or not, we get it. We don’t like calling our plumber because it means there’s a problem and it’s going to cost money to fix. It doesn’t feel good to not be able to fix your own stuff- we can’t fix our plumbing and you can’t fix your printer (honestly, it takes a little bit of magic and luck to fix a printer so no judgement). But we want to make that process as painless as possible. Here are 3 things you should know before your call your IT professional.

  1. We aren’t magicians. We know, we know, it would be nice if there was a Hogwarts for IT support. There isn’t (yet- maybe someone should start one!). We know our way around a computer, we are up to date on the latest trends in technology. We like this stuff- most IT professionals have been taking computers apart and putting them back together since they were 9. But there are some problems we can’t solve, and that bums us out as much as it bums you out.
  2. We are problem solvers. Just because we can’t wave a wand and turn that blue screen into the screensaver of your dog again, doesn’t mean we don’t have a few tricks up our sleeves to fix the problem. And here’s the big secret of IT work: if we don’t know how to fix a problem with our existing knowledge, we love, no, we thrive on finding the answer. Fixing computers is to us what the Saturday morning crossword is to your grandma. We live for this stuff, it gives us a high to struggle through problems then solve it in the end.
  3. We are here for you. No, really. We see our job as half IT support and half talk therapy. We know the feeling of having lost an important file, that panicky “I should have saved it more often” feeling. Because we know that feeling we try to bring calm and security to a situation that feels terrible to you. We actually really like this part of our job; we like helping worried people feel less worried by solving problems. We really are here for you.

So next time you feel the mounting frustration of “why isn’t my computer doing what I want it to do” remember that we are here to help (and all without magic!)

SS Tip of the Month – How to avoid Spam and Phishing Scams!

How to protect yourself against Spam Email and Phishing

Spam is the electronic equivalent of the ‘junk mail’ that arrives on your doormat or in your postbox. However, spam is more than just annoying. It can be dangerous – especially if it’s part of a phishing scam.

Spam emails are sent out in mass quantities by spammers and cybercriminals that are looking to do one or more of the following:

  • Make money from the small percentage of recipients that actually respond to the message
  • Run phishing scams – in order to obtain passwords, credit card numbers, bank account details, and more
  • Spread malicious code onto recipients’ computers
  • Here are some useful tips – from Internet security experts – to help you reduce the amount of spam email you receive:
  • Set up multiple email addresses It’s a good idea to have at least two email addresses:
    • Private email address This should only be used for personal correspondence.  Because spammers build lists of possible email addresses – by using combinations of obvious names, words, and numbers – you should try to make this address difficult for a spammer to guess.  Your private address should not simply be your first and last name – and you should protect the address by doing the following:
      • Never publish your private email address on publicly accessible online resources.
      • If you must publish your private address electronically, try to mask it – in order to avoid having the address picked up by spammers.  For example, ‘Joe.Smith@yahoo.com’ is an easy address for spammers to find.  Try writing it as ‘Joe-dot-Smith-at-yahoo.com’ instead.
      • When you need to publish your private address on a website, it’s safer to do this as a graphics file rather than as a link.
      • If your private address is discovered by spammers – you should change it.  Although this may be inconvenient, changing your email address will help you to avoid spam.
    • Public email address Use this address when you need to register on public forums and in chat rooms, or to subscribe to mailing lists and other Internet services.  The following tips will also help you to reduce the volume of spam you receive via your public email address:
      • Treat your public address as a temporary address.  The chances are high that spammers will rapidly get hold of your public address – especially if it is frequently being used on the Internet.
      • Don’t be afraid to change your public email address often.
      • Consider using a number of public addresses.  That way you’ll have a better chance of tracing which services may be selling your address to spammers.
  • Never respond to any spam Most spammers verify receipt and log responses.  The more you respond, the more spam you’re likely to receive.
  • Think before you click ‘unsubscribe’ Spammers send fake unsubscribe letters, in an attempt to collect active email addresses.  If you click ‘unsubscribe’ in one of these letters, it may simply increase the amount of spam you receive.  Do not click on ‘unsubscribe’ links in emails that come from unknown sources.
  • Keep your browser updated Make sure that you use the latest version of your web browser and that all of the latest Internet security patches have been applied.
  • Use anti-spam filters Only open email accounts with providers that include spam filtering.
    Contact us or call to learn more at 801-633-5219

 

Welcome to Simple Systems

 

Simple Systems LogoAt Simple Systems, we have a vision that each of our clients will see us, not only as their best source for computer and information technology support and service, but they will also consider us as friends who look out for their business. Simple Systems (SS) provides managed I.T. services for over 100 local businesses – allowing them all the benefits of a full-time I.T. staff without the expense. Simple Systems also provides personal computer support in-store, on-site or remotely. We provide our customers the highest quality service at a great price. Contact us today to troubleshoot any system, large or small! 801-633-5219