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I write a weekly column titled ‘COMPUTER SENSE’ that appears in the Business section of the Sunday Norman Transcript newspaper. I hope you find it to be helpful, informative and entertaining. Please email your opinions about the column to Norman Transcript editor Caleb Slinkard at editor@normantranscript.com, or Norman Transcript publisher Mark Millsap at publisher@normantranscript.com. They need your ideas and feedback. Be sure to include your name and location in your email.

Roll the dice for secure passwords

If you've followed this column for any length of time, you've read my rants, warnings and exhortations regarding passwords. In a nutshell, computer and Internet account passwords (email, Facebook, Twitter, banking, Amazon, etc.) need to be sufficiently complex to make...

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Memorable computer quotes

I work for many different people fixing a wide variety of computer problems. This week’s computer fix-it jobs brought to mind some technology-related quotes I’ve had stuck in my mind for years. Quotes like these can attain a proverb-like status, perfectly describing...

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AT&T covers up Yahoo crash

Most folks who pay AT&T to provide them with Internet service don't know that the email part of that service is actually handled by Yahoo. For nigh on 15 years, even though you may have been paying AT&T for Internet service, if your email address ended with att.net,...

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Stop! Don’t install that ridiculous software!

It’s called “crapware,” or, in more polite circles, “junkware.” Some varieties are called “bloatware,” but the root definition is always the same: useless, ridiculous, unnecessary and annoying software that somehow gets into your computer. Where does crapware come...

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Sometimes, honesty is not the best policy

Were you to set up a Facebook profile, would you use it to let your friends, family and others learn more about yourself? Would you talk about your personal history, likes, dislikes and other things that would let people get to know you better? Consider the following...

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Time to change your passwords, again

Are you in the habit of regularly changing the passwords for your online accounts? You should be; changing passwords regularly is a required part of every wise Internet user's safety routine. The reason for changing online account passwords is simple: the Internet bad...

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Caller ID may be lying to you

Have you ever received a phone call from a telemarketer who became rude and abusive when you refused to listen to their sales pitch? Who hasn't? Have you ever tried to report them to their superiors by calling the number that appeared on your Caller ID, only to...

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Avoiding the real fake news stories

10 things should know about Kim Kardashian! Insane card offers 0% APR! 26 hot moms you can't unsee! The best bacon in America! In the class I teach about Internet safety called "Fight the Internet bad guys and win," I recently felt the need to add a section about fake...

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Bad guys steal NSA hacker tools, attack the world

Like a chapter from some cheesy spy novel, the story behind the global "WannaCry" ransomware attacks that began in Europe May 12 is so incredulous that many people will refuse to believe it. Yet, an obstinate refusal to acknowledge the dangers of the Internet is why...

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Beware of fake Flash Player, Firefox updates

Not long ago, I was surfing the website of a popular local publication, reading stories and other items that interested me, when a new page suddenly appeared with an official-looking notice that said, "Attention! It is recommended that you download Flash Player to...

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