Sorry about the double posting - sometimes my computer goes off on a tangent. A while back it was freezing up on me - it does that sometimes when I have too many programs running at the same time and then ask it to do something crucial and it gets overwhelmed, I guess. I have no patience - Fred keeps telling me, "Wait - give it time," but sometimes it's slower than molasses in January, and that's when my fingers go out of control trying any key that might work. I know, the computer isn't the problem, I am.
Speaking of computers - we had an unusual call around lunch time today. The caller was supposedly from Hewlett-Packard. Fortunately, Fred answered the phone and the caller told Fred he was calling to correct something on Fred's computer - he needed to delete something or other. When Fred questioned him, the guy gave his name and quoted a number that he said was the computer number, making it all sound very legitimate. Fred told him he couldn't work with him then but asked for a job number so he could contact him later through the service center, and the call ended. When Fred got in touch with the service center, there was no such person and they confirmed our suspicion that it was a bogus call - someone trying to hack into the computer or get information from us that they could use later.
Then tonight on the news there was a warning that people are being targeted by these scammers offering to fix a problem we don't have. Here's a link explaining what they do and how they do it. On the newscast tonight, they said it is very difficult to find and stop this sort of thing - the perpetrators are skillful at making these calls sound absolutely legitimate, and there's no way to trace them because they use cell phones. I looked up the 800 number and sure enough, it was a mobile phone located someplace in Kansas.
Older folks like us are more likely to be targeted - we're not supposed to be as savvy as the younger crowd. It's amazing how much information is available on the web about nearly everyone these days, and that's great sometimes, but it makes all of us vulnerable to these scams, so we need to be smart about being part of the internet. Also, it's easy to pick up a virus or "worm" and we'd never know until our compute failed and by that time we could have spread it to everyone on our e-mail list - here's a link that explains.
That's why I don't open or forward messages that have a long string of "forwards" attached and we make sure our firewalls and anti-virus programs are up to date. I say "we" - it's actually Fred who keeps our computers safe. I mostly just do the cussing when things slow down.