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WorldStart Tech Tips 2015-06-29

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Quick Tip

Should I Switch To Android?

When it comes to technology people can get attached to brands and operating systems like some folks do to sports teams.

Take this question from a reader: “My wife and I bought two iPhones and an iPad from our phone provider as part of a special deal. We were just getting the hang of them and liked them. Now my daughter says we should take them back and get Android phones because they are much better and let you add additional storage. Is she right?”


No! She’s not right. And not because I’m weighing in on the superiority of iPhones to Androids. I have an Android phone and an Android-based Kindle tablet and I love them. But if you like your Apple devices, there’s no reason to take them back.

Yes, some Android devices offer expandable storage. If that’s important to you, maybe you should buy Android. But more than likely you have plenty of space on your Apple devices. Bottom line: Apple and Android operating systems both work fine for most people’s needs.

If you’re happy with your device, there’s no need to switch. Would you trade in your new Chevy because someone said, “Hey you should drive a Ford!”

Use what you like.

Has anyone ever tried to persaude you to switch from a brand you like? What did you do? Click here to let us know in the comments.

~ Cynthia

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OH WOW! We're so excited!

Steve, Gary, and our lead technology expert Audra have an absolutely incredible E-Book that's going to rock the entire Internet - WorldStart's Internet Security Survival Guide - and it's finally updated as of this month, October 2014!

Everyone loves their computers - but very few realize how devastatingly DANGEROUS things can get when that PC is compromised and turned against you!

And it happens to people just like you EVERY DAY!!

The threats just keep piling up - hackers, viruses, malware, spyware, scammers, phishing attacks, compromised public WiFi, over the shoulder attacks, router attacks, password crackers, compromised software, outdated operating systems, firewall breaches, browser hijacking, malicious web sites, dangerous pop-ups, cross site scripting, e-mail hacking, virus hoaxes, deadly file attachments, compromised personal information, stolen data from old computers, hijacked HOSTS files, spoofed file extension tricks, autorun viruses, ransomware, infested freeware - well, you get the idea!

Do you know how to protect yourself from ALL of the threats listed above?

If you don't, I can PROMISE this...

It's not a matter of IF you become a victim - it's truly a matter of WHEN!

They always say, "What you don't know can't hurt you." Well, here in the Internet age, ignorance is NOT bliss!

Millions of people who didn't think it could happen to them fall victim EVERY DAY - simply because they didn't KNOW there was a threat!

That's CRAZY. In fact, it's not just a little crazy, it's "Trying-To-Jump-The-Grand-Canyon-With-A-Bicycle" INSANE!

Especially when it's SOOOO easy to avoid the problems in the first place IF you know what the threats are AND how to avoid them!

Bottom line - You need to know exactly what dangers lurk around the dark corners of the internet - or you WILL be the next victim! You absolutely, positively MUST know HOW you can get attacked and HOW to defend yourself!

And THAT'S why we created this absolutely fantastic new E-Book!

PLUS - we've written this in a way EVERYONE can understand!

Each and every chapter is written in fun, easy to read language that you'll discover is REALLY SIMPLE to follow!

We even have loads of pictures and illustrations!

I know there's a few people out there crazy enough to think:

"There's nothing of value on my computer, I have nothing to hide, so I don't care if someone gets in or I get a virus."

Music to a hacker's EARS! The bad guys rely on IGNORANCE in order to attack your PC! They rely on people who think that there's nothing of value on their computer - and NOTHING could be further from the truth!

Even a computer with nothing but a fresh Windows install is a juicy target!

If your computer is compromised - either by a hacker or malware (viruses, rogueware, spyware, etc) any of the following can happen:

arrow Your identity is stolen (easier than you think - we spill the beans)
arrow Your credit card information is stolen
arrow Your bank account is compromised
arrow Your friends e-mail addresses are stolen - then attacked
arrow Any documents are fair game and can be used for identity theft
arrow Files or entire drives can be deleted - all your music, photos, etc - GONE!
arrow Your computer can be turned into a server for adult sites
arrow Your computer can be used to commit fraud - and YOU take the blame
arrow Your computer can be used as an illegal attack "zombie"
arrow Your computer may be held ransom until you pay up - happens 35 MILLION times a month!
arrow You will be blasted with non-stop pop-ups
arrow Your computer will be inoperable to the point of needing an expensive overhaul

So, yeah, it IS a big deal if you get compromised. In addition, if your computer is used for illegal purposes by the hacker the feds could come knocking on YOUR door - not theirs.

Oh - and just think how expensive it would be to take your computer to a shop to get it working again - all because YOU didn't know what's in our life-saving e-book!

We want to show you how to recognize and avoid the pitfalls that MILLIONS of people fall victim to each and every day. You know - the people who never thought it would happen to them.

By the time you finish reading this incredible book, you'll have your computer locked down so tight the folks over at Fort Knox will come to YOU looking for advice!

We've divided the book into 9 sections and there's a VERY brief outline below. But...

PLEASE keep in mind you're only seeing a small FRACTION of the information that's jam-packed into this breakthrough book!!!

There's another 85% of the book we haven't even hinted at below! WOW!

When it comes to attacking your computer, there are no shortage of tools at the disposal of the bad guys! Do you REALLY know how to stay safe? This section will show you the threats - and how to avoid them! We show you how to set up your computer to guard against all types of malicious software - viruses, spyware, adware, rogueware, ransomware - we show you the software and techniques you need to block it ALL!

Oh, and just wait till you see the free anti-malware titles and amazing firewall we've discovered!


Everyone loves to use their laptops with public WiFi. Hey, what could be better than sitting down in your hotel room, at an airport, or coffee shop and logging on for some free Internet?

Well, hackers LOVE these places too - only it's your data they're after!

In fact, I'd go so far as to say if you don't know what we have in our book you probably shouldn't even be using public WiFi - EVER! It's FAR more dangerous than most people realize!

Your accounts can get compromised, your passwords stolen, and your e-mail intercepted - and that's just for starters. Identity theft, attacks on your friends / contacts are ALL possible - AND probable!

Oh, yeah - and the hacker doesn't even need to break into your computer to pull this off! He just logs onto the wireless network and goes to work with software that can "spy" on you!

We'll show you how he does it - and how YOU can stay safe!


The online world is a dangerous place - from scams, to hijacking, to malicious pops-ups, to fraud - there's a lot of ways to trip and fall out there! You need to know how to tell the good from the bad, how to spot phishing scams, online scams, and con artists. You need to know how to properly set up your browser, how to stay safe on Facebook, how to respond to malicious pop-up windows, how to deal with cookies, and more!

A lack of knowledge in ANY of the areas above is a guarantee for trouble down the road. And that's a HUGE problem! All it takes is one scam, one vicious pop-up, or one drive-by infection to compromise your data, ruin your computer, and get your identity stolen - what you DON'T know WILL hurt you

Oh, this is HUGE - this chapter ALONE is worth the price of the entire book! We reveal all the pitfalls people make when setting and using passwords - and show you how to avoid 'em!

Knowing the difference between a strong password and a typical password is the difference between getting your accounts hacked or staying secure.

We also talk about how you handle passwords in general. If you don't know the critical 7 steps we outline in this book even the strongest of passwords are at risk! Getting your accounts hacked can RUIN your life in ways you've never even thought of!

What happens if a hacker breaks into your bank account? Or your credit card account? Or heck - even your Amazon account? Talk about a nightmare! Our passwords section gives you the key to minimizing your risk!

It takes less than 30 minutes to compromise an unsecured computer connected to the Internet. There are thousands of hackers out there scanning for weaknesses right now - you're likely getting scanned dozens of times a day - you could be getting scanned even as you read this!

Is your home network set up properly or are you about to be the next statistic? Make sure you know for sure with our book!

We're going to show you how to lock down your home network - your router, your wired network, your wireless network - everything. We'll show you how to set the right encryption on your wireless, how to make sure your firewall is engaged properly, and even how to name your network to avoid getting personally targeted for a WiFi attack.

E-mail is literally the door to your digital world. A compromise here - by either a hacker or malware program - can be devastating! If there's ONE place you need to be safe, it's when you deal with your e-mail!

Just think - what would happen if someone had access to your e-mail account? Chances are they could easily piece together enough information about you to steal your identity (just think of all the items in your inbox, sent items box, and outbox). In addition, every private account you have online - your bank, credit cards, Amazon, Paypal, etc ALL use e-mail to recover passwords. If the bad guy has your e-mail account, he can be in ALL your accounts in a matter of MINUTES!

You DO NOT want your e-mail compromised - and we're going to show you how to keep it locked down tight. Everything you need to know to set the right kind of password, avoid scams, and KEEP IT PRIVATE!

This is the fun section! We have a LOAD of general safety tips designed to help you keep safe in all your online endeavors. We'll show you a "secret" file you can use to prevent your computer from ever seeing another malicious site. We'll show you how to properly dispose of an old hard drive. We'll show you how to avoid "bad" freeware. We'll show you how to avoid ransomware. And that's just for starters!

There's a literally TRUCKLOAD of advice in this section that'll help keep you super-secure and safe!

And that's just a small sample of what we're going to cover!

In addition to the sections above, there's also a section on why the bad guys are after you and what they can do if they get access to your PC. We also cover just what to do if you get infected - and 6 easy step to follow for getting uninfected! Our book also includes tips for keeping your computer physically safe from theft - after all, if your computer gets stolen, what's the point of the rest of the security?

Finally, we've also included a glossary to help with the terms found throughout the book and 20 of our favorite FREE security-related programs! The money you save on commercial software will pay for this book 20X over!

Whew - this is BY FAR the most important book ANY computer user will ever read!

We've looked around - and there isn't anything like this anywhere! Amazingly enough, finding a traditional book on computer security is almost impossible - and when you DO find one, it's written in such a technical manner you'd need a degree in Computer Science to figure the thing out!

This innovative new book is TRULY unprecedented! It's easy to read, packed with pictures, screen shots, and illustrations, and hey - we even try to make the whole thing entertaining! You'll BLAST through the material and before you know it everyone will be coming to YOU for advice on computer security!


Yup, EVERTHING we know about Internet security for the home user is JAMMED into this earth-shattering e-book!!

Your cost? Get this - we're almost giving this away! Just $4.97 and you get an immediate download! How cool is that? You could be browsing the pages of this e-book in a matter of MINUTES! Oh - and no special reader required either - it's a standard PDF file that can be read with the free Adobe Reader!

HURRY! Grab your copy of this indispensable book now for just $4.97!

PS - Anyone who thinks they don't need this information and that an attack "won't happen to them" is living a lie. It's like not wearing a seatbelt because "so far" you've never been in a bad accident.

Bottom line - If you're using the Internet and you don't know the information we outline in our e-book, then it's not a matter of IF you'll get compromised - it's simply a matter of WHEN.

Don't Surf The Internet Without It!


Computers 101

Windows 10: What About Vista?

I’ve had quite a few questions like these from readers: “You have answered questions about converting to Windows 10 from 7 or 8. I operate Vista what’s my situation?” and “It is only free on computers that can upgrade. Not all computers with windows 7 or 8.1 can run it. The processor must be the right kind.”


The free upgrade to Windows 10 is only available for users of Windows 7, 8, and 8.1.  (That does not include Enterprise editions for business).  Windows 8 users must first make the free upgrade to 8.1.   If you are running Windows 8.1 or Windows Vista, you are not eligible for the free upgrade.

If you want to upgrade your device to Windows 10, you’ll have to pay around $100 to do it. Of course your device has to meet the minimum system requirements.  If you’re running 8 or 8.1, you shouldn’t see an issue.

The requirements for Windows 10 are:

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster.
  • RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
  • Free hard disk space: 16 GB.
  • Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver.
  • A Microsoft account and Internet access.

These requirements are virtually identical to the Windows 7 minimum requirements:

  • 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor

  • 1 gigabyte (GB) RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)

  • 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)

  • DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver.


But there’s an additional requirement: your processor must also be able to support PAE, NX and SSE2.

  • PAE gives 32-bit processors the ability to use more than 4 GB of physical memory on capable versions of Windows, and is a prerequisite for NX.

  • NX helps your processor guard the PC from attacks by malicious software.

  • SSE2 is a standard instruction set on processors that is increasingly used by third-party apps and drivers.

You can check your XP or Vista system by clicking here to download the Window 8.1 Upgrade assistant and running it.

~ Cynthia

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Do you have a question for us? Ask it here!


On The Move

Is Your Bank App Secure?

Convenience is simply what most people want in their lives. Whether it’s a quick meal or an easy commute to work, the goal is usually to make the tasks we must do all the time easier. The same holds true with our normal banking transactions. Most banks have realized this, of course, and adopted new features so that we might avoid those long lines and get our business done more quickly. The pinnacle of this effort can be seen in the number of mobile banking apps available to bank customers. Gone are the days of actually physically going to the bank. Instead, you can check your accounts and pay bills all from the convenience of your own smartphone. There may be a downside to all this convenience, however, and it all comes down to security. A recent report of 40 mobile banking apps highlights that most of them have some serious security flaws. So how can you know if the mobile banking app you use is safe? Here are some points to check out.


Two-Factor Authentication

According to the report, a full 70 percent of tested apps had no support for the fairly common feature of two-factor authentication. This feature usually works by sending you a one-time use code (normally via text message) whenever you put in your account password. This means that even if cyber criminals somehow get hold of your password, they’ll be out of luck if they don’t have your phone as well. While two-factor authentication is used for numerous accounts out there, like email, for some reason it hasn’t quite caught on for mobile banking apps. Make sure your app has the feature, or else you’re best off avoiding the app altogether.


SSL Encryption

One of the more alarming findings from the report shows that 90 percent of mobile banking apps didn’t...

Click here to learn what you must know about your banking app.


From The Archives

Check Your Facebook App Permissions - You'll Be Surprised

We’ve talked before about app permissions on your Android phone or tablet, iPhone or iPad – but there’s another place you’ve probably granted a lot of app permissions that you might not think of: Facebook.

If you’re a Facebook user, you’ve likely added an app or two for playing games or entering a contest. Let’s look at how to check out what permissions you’ve authorized:

First, click the privacy settings in the upper right-hand corner of your Facebook Feed. (It looks like a little padlock) Select See more settings from the drop-down menu.

Choose Apps from the column on the left.

You’ll see a list of your Facebook apps in alphabetical order...

Click here to find out how to protect your Facebook information.


Today's Feature

Help! I Can't Access Backup Data!

Not being able to access your backup is a pretty scary thought. Well, it’s happened to Howard who writes: “I have backed up all of my files on a Seagate 5g external hard drive & when I upload them onto another computer they are unreadable. the Windows software are not the same. HELP!”

Hi, Howard.  Thanks for the great question!

First off, please allow me to say that an external hard drive is a great way to back up your data.  Not only are they portable, so that they can be stored off-site, but typically very reliable.


Now, as far as why you can’t access the data, there could be a couple of reasons for this.

One possibility is that your data or your drive may have become corrupted.  So my first question would be can you read the data on the drive?  If you open up your computer directory, and can see the files on your external drive, then that’s a good sign.  That means that your data and your drive are okay.  If your computer can’t read the data, but can open the drive, then that means that your data is probably corrupt.  If this is the case, you may be able to take your drive to your friendly neighborhood computer geek and get the data recovered.  They may not be able to, but it would be worth a try.  If your computer can’t open the drive at all, then your drive is probably failing or has already failed.  Again, a computer geek may be able to recover the data, but may not.

My next question would be can you see...

Click here to learn more about accessing your backup.


Amanda's Coolsite

The Patchery

The Patchery lets you custom design kids clothes.  I’m going to start by telling you that this is obviously a commerical site as it’s designed for you to buy something as the end product. However, I think that like several sites I’ve brought you before the customization of the end product makes it worthwhile to check out. And it’s super fun to play with even if you don’t buy anything, or to get ideas for making something yourself.

Growing up my mom made us a ton of clothes, and it was always fun to go to the fabric store with her and pick out material for new dress. But I don’t sew (yet) and so if I had kids I couldn’t do that, but I could come to a site like this, let my kids pick out the fabric for their outfit and how they want to put it together and then have something really special made for them.

It features clothes for both boys and girls and a wide range of fabric options. I think the prices are reasonable for handmade clothing and while I couldn’t afford to outfit a child in a complete wardrobe, I think it would be reasonable for buying a special outfit for family pictures, or events.

When you arrive at the site you can check out the how it works section to get an idea of how the process works, or you could check out the idea gallery for inspiration. But I’d dive right in and click Start Designing. because I found the interface is really intuitive.

You start by picking a product, then you’ll you’ll pick a fabric collection (I love Starlight Lodge), then you apply the fabric to each part of the pattern front and back,  and then once you approve it you can check out the sizing options.

All the silhouettes are simple and child friendly. And how cute is it that you can design the front and back of each thing? For dresses I feel like that makes them almost reversible!

If you have kids in your life this is worth checking out. Heck, I don’t have kids and I had a lot of fun designing clothes for them.


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Do you have a cool, non-commercial site that you want to share?

Send it to Amanda at


One More Big Deal

Is your car, truck or van missing something... I BET IT IS!

The United States auto flag easily attaches to your car window letting the flag proudly wave in the wind!

The plastic mount is 17” long and rolls right up into your window. The sturdy construction will stand the test of time.

The flag is made of super-weather-enduring nylon with sewn edges to prevent unraveling.

A good flag can be expensive! But it shouldn’t cost you a million dollars to show off your pride. So here’s the deal… For just $3.97 you can proudly wave the Stars and Stripes everywhere you go!

Oh, and did I mention that this deal won't last long...


Once this deal is over... It's over. So hurry and order yours today before Tuesday and make your car or truck happy!


Monthly Wallpaper

June Wallpaper Is Ready

The featured desktop wallpaper for June is all set and ready to go. I get requests for more vertical wallpaper from time to time, so if you have a phone or tablet and have been searching for a vertical shot for your background, give the egret below a try :)

And remember, there are hundreds of images to choose from on the site!

All can be found here and are 100% free:

Oh, and if you enjoy these images, please tell your friends!

Coming Your Way

I came across this guy in Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains National Park. It was early morning and I think he was walking along looking for the nearest blackberry bush. I quickly found a good position and loved what I saw in the viewfinder. Beautiful sidelight was coming in and…(More)

Devil's Bathtub

Had to get a little wet for this one. Waded out into the (surprisingly cold) water and setup a tripod to capture the shot. This was the morning after a rainy day and there was a lot of mist in the air, water over the falls, and the color saturation was...(More)

Egret Enjoying Sunset (ideal for smart phones)

This photo was captured in Ritch Grissom Wetlands on a sunny evening in FL. There were dozens of egrets flying in and out as the sun fell towards the horizon. It was completely hectic – at least from the perspective of a photographer trying to capture all of it before the light disappeared for the night. I had been shooting feverishly as...(More)

For these and other great selections of desktop wallpaper, head to:

As always, the wallpaper is 100% free, so enjoy!

Attention All Wildlife Photographers!

My new book, Secrets To Stunning Wildlife Photography, is now available! Learn how to take your wildlife photography to the next level with this comprehensive 290 page e-book!

Photography Tips - Step By Step Videos!

Is it time to improve your photography? Check out my YouTube channel - loads of helpful photography tips with more added monthly (more or less).



You can also view the current newsletter and archives online at

Copyright, Disclaimer, Etc.

ISSN: 1529-336X
Copyright 2015, WorldStart. All unauthorized reproduction strictly prohibited.

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Finally, you agree to try any advice contained or suggested in this newsletter at your own risk.

Microsoft and Windows are trademarks or registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation (duh!)

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