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How to To Protect Yourself from Phishing Attacks

Phishing is an extremely common form of fraud that is similar to phone impersonation attacks that occurred before consumer Internet became widespread. Phishers set up websites that impersonate authentic webpages run by banking institutions, credit card companies, and a variety of other legitimate services. A victim might receive an email from this so-called institution, requesting the victim to update their profile information, change their password, or participate in a survey. The information the victim willingly provides online is then used for fraudulent purposes. Here are a few online browsing tips to keep in mind to avoid these types of attacks.

Check URLs

Before you click on an outgoing link on an email, Microsoft urges Internet users to first check the actual web address of a link before clicking on it. Phishers often use deceptive anchor text – the visible part of the link – to trick readers into clicking links in their email. If you are convinced that this website represents a reputable company, then you might feel comfortable enough entering personal information in this web form. You can check the validity of an URL by first hovering over the link. Scrutinize the URL – if it does not match with the company’s official web address, then do not click it. A few other red alarms include URLs with: number sequences, misspelled company names, non-traditional top-level domains (like .co at the end of an URL), and domain names that include gibberish.

Check HTTPS Security

Most reputable websites that require logins use a security protocol known as HTTPS. This prevents attackers from intercepting usernames and logins during the sign in process. Before you sign into an online account, examine the login page URL at the top of your browser. It should read “https://” before the web address. If you do not see this security protocol being used on a website, then double check the website address to make sure it’s authentic.

Keep Your Tech Updated

Updating your software and operating systems can prevent many current attacks. These patches often come with security updates that prevent current vulnerabilities from affecting your computer. Periodically run software and system updates overnight, so that it doesn’t interrupt your workflow.

If you are the victim of a phishing crime, contact the authorities and make sure you research and select a good attorney to learn about the types of recourse you have. Internet fraud can threaten your online accounts and assets, so it’s important to take action immediately. Before you click unknown links, be sure to examine URLs and security protocols.

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Is Your SEO Getting Lost in Mobile Readiness?

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It’s the first year where more people are using mobile devices than desktops, and that’s created a major issue for website owners: How can you please everyone? There are three major ways to get mobile ready: Ensure the current website follows responsive design best practices, create a separate mobile website, and create an app that works in conjunction with your existing website. However, don’t lose your SEO in the shuffle.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is more important than ever because mobile readiness means consumers are wanting their information faster and clearer than ever. As they’re scrolling through websites on the morning commute or at lunch, if your mobile version doesn’t deliver, you’re going to lose them. However, you might not even get a chance in the first place if your site gets lost due to SEO oversight.

SEO mistakes in a mobile world

It’s nearly a catch-22: You need to create clear, short, simple language for mobile readers, but you also need to have high quality, keyword rich content to appease SEO standards. This can be done, but it takes a very skilled SEO professional and writer to make it happen. A great app develop might be able to create what you need for a website app, but they probably aren’t SEO whizzes.

In a perfect world, your website or app designer is working in conjunction with an SEO professional. This can seem like a costly and time consuming undertaking, but you really only have one shot. As you transition into mobile readiness, you may already have a lot of regular readers and consumers, but they’re not loyal.

Keeping your SEO

Not only is SEO an easy oversight when developing a new page or app, it’s easy to get behind in general. There’s no way to “win” at SEO, but there are certainly changes and additions (or subtractions) most people can make to improve their ranking. The best practices are constantly evolving, and the best keywords are always changing, too. It’s virtually impossible to conduct a full DIY SEO campaign.

One of the most important tools you can have moving into mobile readiness is someone who’s skilled at SEO and can help make this transition as flawless as possible. Just a few days of poor SEO can be long enough for new consumers to go elsewhere and feel like they’re happy enough with the competition. Mobile readiness, and SEO, is no longer optional.

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last update: April 1, 2015

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4 Ways to Make Chiropractic Care Part of Your Techie Lifestyle

Who has the time to see doctors on a regular basis? With your busy lifestyle, you barely have time to grab a quick bite to eat or keep up with your Facebook posts. However, prioritizing your health is made easier with technology, and many healthcare professionals are getting on board. If you want to take better control over your well-being, start by branching out and including some alternative care that complements your traditional physician. chiropractor 1

Chiropractors aren’t meant to be seen only after a car crash. Experts in the health and alignment of the spine, this part of your body plays a role in everything from muscle pain to headaches. In fact, those regular adjustments can work wonders in ensuring you feel your best. Even though the average appointment takes 30 minutes or less, it can still be a challenge to squeeze in an adjustment.

Here’s how to make it a little easier.

1. Download chiro-friendly apps

There are hundreds of apps which are chiropractor-approved and do things like remind you of ergonomic postures or provide exercises that are office-friendly. Check with your chiropractor first to make sure none of these suggestions are contraindicative for you or your body. After that, you can start exploring the many apps at your fingertips.

2. Check in without “checking in”

A reputable chiropractor will work with you and your schedule, quickly replying to phone calls and emails. Maybe you just have a simple question about pain management and don’t have time to schedule an appointment. Make use of technology, and remember that some professionals might even offer virtual video appointments.

3. Draft a wellness plan

Include all of your healthcare professionals when drafting a wellness plan, and ensure that preventative care takes top billing. Just like you wouldn’t skip paying your phone bill each month, you should have the same priorities with your health. Maybe this includes an adjustment once per month as well as an acupuncture session or massage therapy. Find a plan that works with you and your schedule.

4. Do your own research

There’s a lot of wrong information about chiropractors floating around, but don’t take any information as gospel until you do the research yourself. You’ll be surprised by the history of chiropractic care and the many conditions it can treat. Don’t dismiss it as unnecessary because it might be the tool you’ve been searching for.

 

Mobile:

4 Diet Strategies You Can Monitor with Mobile Apps

Mobile devices can help us take positive steps toward healthy eating. There are hundreds of health apps on the market that both educate and manage our dietary needs.

Caloric and nutrient intake can directly affect our cardiovascular health, longevity, and workout recovery time. Here are four ways you can alter your nutrition with mobile apps. dietapps

1. Count calories

Obesity is a very real threat to people living in the United States. According to the American Heart Association, about 35% of adults and 16.9% of children qualify as obese.

These alarming statistics demonstrate the need for balanced diets among American citizens. Bringing your weight down to a healthy range involves a combination of factors, including a caloric deficit.

This means that you have to take in fewer calories than your body burns. You can monitor your caloric intake by using journal apps such as MyFitnessPal or Lose It!

Both of these apps have extensive calorie catalogs, so you can track down the exact foods you’re consuming and log them daily.

2. Nutrient awareness

You might be hitting your calorie goals each day, but are you getting the right nutrients? Depending on your goals, you might want to become more aware of the types of nutrients you’re consuming.

For example, if you’re trying to build more muscle, then apps like Bulk Up or Protein Tracker can help you measure how much protein you’re taking in. These apps can also give you tips on which foods to eat and avoid while you’re building muscle.

3. Water goals

Sometimes, your body might feel hungry when you actually just need water. Generally, by the time you feel thirsty, your body is already dehydrated.

So how much water should you actually drink? The Institute of Medicine recommends about 11 cups for women and 15 cups each day for men.

You can use the apps Waterlogged or Vesi for excellent results in tracking your water consumption so you don’t get dehydrated.

4. Supplement management

For a completely well-rounded diet, you can take supplements, such as magnesium oxide from Barrington Nutritionals. Some nutrients can be hard to find naturally in food, but you can get them through supplements.

Learn more about supplement effects by exploring such apps as Supplements Guide or Vitamins 101.

Our mobile devices can have a significant positive impact on our health by guiding us to better dietary behaviors. So what are you waiting for? Download some of these apps to get better control over your health and wellness!

Lifestyle:

4 Ways to Document Workplace Harassment Digitally

If you don’t feel safe at your workplace, this can be an extremely stressful situation. If you are the target of unwanted sexual attention, physical abuse, or verbal harassment, it’s vital for you to speak with your superior or human resources department immediately.

While this might feel like a risky move, acting early can prevent the situation from escalating further. If you’re worried about retaliation, speak with your HR department and your corresponding state Department of Labor office.

Below are four ways to pursue a complaint effectively and safely.

1. Employ written correspondence

When you must send internal communications to HR and other staff members, document every exchange via email. If someone displays inappropriate behavior through a written communication, make sure to save this documentation.

When you submit a report of work incidents, obtain a copy of the paperwork for your own records. Having ample documentation of each incident can help your employer, the authorities, and local labor office intervene and stop dangerous or inappropriate workplace activities.

2. Take photos

If you’re in a situation where you can document harassment through photos, then use your smartphone to take a shot or two of the environment or subjects of an incident. This can be useful in the documentation of property damage or injuries sustained at work.

However, you should obviously use a camera only in a situation where it is safe to do so.

3. Make backups

Create backups of all your documentation and incident correspondence. Ideally, you should have more than one backup in separate locations.

That way, if one backup is lost or damaged, you will still be able to access the documents in the alternative backups. HR investigations can last a long time, and this information can come in handy in the future.

Also, you may want to revisit old documentation in case an investigation is reopened, or an incident occurs again.

4. Maintain online calendars

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission encourages employees to report workplace harassment to management teams immediately to mitigate risk. It is vital that you keep records regarding the dates and times of possible harassment incidents during the reporting.

This will give your testimony more credibility, and help your company verify the incidents of harassment. Online cloud calendars that sync between your computer and mobile devices can be an excellent place to keep notes regarding incidents at your workplace.

Experiencing workplace harassment can be emotionally draining, and cause a great deal of anxiety. A business litigation attorney can help you resolve these incidents and give you insight regarding your local, state, and federal rights as an employee.

If you are currently a victim of workplace harassment, start exploring ways to get out of the situation as soon as possible.

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Mobile:

How to Build a Better Financial Future with Your Smartphone

Debt is a very real threat for many Americans. With student loan debts reaching more than $1.2 trillion in 2014, many graduates are finding everyday living to be a struggle. smartphoneandfinance

The entire economy suffers as a consequence, because young people delay the purchase of cars, houses, and other substantial goods due to their loan bills. You can take greater control of your financial situation, however, by managing your finances through your smartphone.

The speed of live notifications and mobile app features can help you take action on payments, trades, and credit score changes immediately.

Live credit scores

Credit affects multiple areas of our lives. For example, before you can sign up with a cellular carrier, rent an apartment, or buy a home, you will be subjected to a credit check.

It’s important that you remain aware of your current score, since it has an impact on so many facets in your life. FICO credit scores range from 300 to 850, and depending where you land on the scale, your credit will receive a label with categories from “Very Poor” to “Excellent.”

Multiple factors will affect your score. You can keep tabs on your credit score by using apps such as Credit Karma or Mint.

Bank account alerts

We all dread overdrafts, because they can quickly compound into a terrible burden. For example, you might have forgotten about an automatic bill pay that you linked to an account.

If you don’t have enough funds to cover the bill pay, then your bank will charge you an overdraft penalty fine. As long as you’re unaware of this overdraft, you might happen to use your debit card at the supermarket, which leads to even more overdraft fines per transaction.

These can accumulate very quickly and land you in significant debt. But you can avoid such situations by signing up for mobile alerts through your bank and linking your accounts to services such as Mint’s mobile app.

These services inform you of any low balances.

Executing trades

Your mobile device also enables you to obtain real-time information about investment statuses. Apps such as Fidelity and ETRADE can give you access to instant updates.

This allows you to act on potential trades any time of the day. Being able to execute trades during your lunch break or between classes will give you a competitive advantage.

Whether you’re watching tech stocks casually or working with a commodity trader, you’ll be able to keep your eye on the market with mobile trading tools.

You’re able to view real-time information regarding your debt, payment statuses, and investments from your smartphone. So what are you waiting for?

Gain more control over your financial situation with mobile apps.

Mobile:

4 Ways iCloud Drive Will Change Your Apple Experience

iCloud

Apple’s announcement at the World Wide Developers Expo in early June has caused quite a stir online. Soon the tech giant will be exploring competitive cloud services, which threatens to cut into the customer base at Dropbox and Google Drive.

Apple recently announced the new pricing tiers and capabilities of iCloud Drive, which builds on the company’s existing freemium cloud service. However, Apple is detangling the cloud storage integration from proprietary apps and giving your files room to breath in separate cloud storage drive.

Here are four of the highlights.

1. Lower prices

Currently, iCloud users have to pay $20 for a 10GB upgrade and $100 for a 50GB upgrade each year for storage space that goes beyond the free 5GB. Once iCloud Drive comes out with upgraded pricing tiers, however, users will be able to get 20 GB for $0.99 a month, which works out to just $12 a year.

This dramatic increase in storage capacity and reduction in price will make iCloud Drive far more accessible than its previous service.

2. Scalable capacities

If you can’t survive on just 20 GB, then you’re still covered. There are scalable storage capacities that range from 200GB to 1 TB, which will allow you to back up large hard drives and big files, such as movies and audio.

This can be a great advantage for small businesses or sole proprietors who would like to back up all their files on a single cloud storage account.

3. Integration

One of the most appealing aspects of iCloud Drive will be its integration for Apple mobile and computer platforms. The iCloud Drive capabilities are built directly into the upcoming Mac OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 systems, so users won’t have to download separate software to access and edit their files.

The iCloud Drive folder will be visible from Finder, so you can just drag and drop files to this location, or save directly to it like any other folder.

4. Cross-platform support

One the most exciting services of iCloud Drive is its support for Windows. Apple’s products have been notoriously proprietary to their own hardware and operating systems. This cross-platform support makes iCloud Drive a potential contender in mixed platform business environments.

The enhancements to Apple’s current iCloud service will make cloud storage and sharing much easier for users on Apple devices and PCs. Web-based industries from digital marketing firms to web developers are keeping an eye on cloud technologies, since they can serve both clients and employees with important data.

It’ll be interesting to see how the cloud storage industry changes after iCloud Drive is unleashed.

Social:

The Social Media Prenup: Do You Really Need One?

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Visit a legal document site and you’re apt to find just about anything. But an item that’s becoming increasingly popular of late is the social media prenup.

It’s a document couples sign that dictates what they can and can’t post, tweet, or share about each other. ABC News recently picked up on the trend, and pointed out that saying what a person can’t do can be a risky move.

Is it really necessary and, more important, what’s at the core of its popularity?

Critics suggest that a couple that needs such an agreement probably has bigger issues, but people say the same about folks who draw up “regular” prenups. While it’s a good idea to have a social media guru at the helm if you’re a business owner, do you really need a legally binding agreement to make sure your significant other tags you only in the most flattering photos?

According to many social media professionals, you might as well save your money and exercise basic courtesy.

Be nice on social media

Most people know when a photo isn’t flattering, but they’ll usually tag it anyway. In other cases, a person may look at him- or herself in a photo and doesn’t think about it from anyone else’s perspective.

Consider it from that aspect before you post no-makeup pics, swimsuit photos, or a first photo of the morning shot, no matter who it is. If you wouldn’t want it done to you, don’t do it to someone else. Too often, people forget to observe the golden rule on social media.

The same thing goes for posting private information, even if you don’t explicitly name the person. People aren’t stupid, and they can infer (correctly or not) a lot of things from your “cryptic” comments.

Keep your personal life to yourself, don’t air your dirty laundry, and remember that screen shots ensure that once something’s online, it’s there for good.

Keep emotions in check

Posting while angry or frustrated can lead you into a lot of trouble. Keep your fights offline, and remember that your sense of humor won’t necessarily appeal to everyone.

You might come off as rude, childish, or immature, and you drag other people into your personal life. Even if you apologize online, you’ll mainly be putting cracks in the foundation of your relationship for all to see, and providing free entertainment.

It’s unfortunate that people have perceived a need for a social media prenup, but it’s not Mt. Everest: You don’t have to obtain it just because it’s there.

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