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Jim’s WebLetter for 2/18/17

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Hi-ya Yahoo emailers, Facebook news readers, and public charging users!  

Have I got news for you this week. I also include a bonus view for you, too.

Yahoo email users … deja vu! A notice has gone out that Yahoo email accounts may have been hacked (third time in six months). Frankly, I don’t understand why they are having such a great difficulty in protecting their email servers, but I wouldn’t keep an account open with them. I would be transferring everything to someone else. See my past WebLetter issues about Gmail.

As always, change basically any password anywhere that you might have in common with your Yahoo one, and be careful with any unsolicited messages you may receive. http://bgr.com/2017/02/16/yahoo-says-hackers-breached-your-account-in-new-attack-without-stealing-your-password/

Speaking of being hacked, if you’re thinking about charging your mobile device from a public outlet … Think again.

Drew Paik, founder of security firm Authentic8, reports that hackers can now access phones from public outlets and wi-fi via a technique called “juice jacking.” It works because your USB cable is designed to transmit data, even when you might not want it to.

He says your whole phone is compromised if you plug into a jacked outlet because hackers can see your photos, texts, emails, and potentially anything else on your phone. They might even be able to access your camera and keyboard.

Of course, you want to beat this kind of hack, so here’s how to do it … Carry a portable battery. They’re cheap to buy, easy to charge and can be carried in your pocket or case. Another way is to buy a charge-only USB cable that is incapable of transmitting data. Either way, do yourself a favor and don’t use public charging stations. http://www.scam-detector.com/online-auctions-and-tech-scams/juice-jacking-phone-charging

Facebook deployed a revised version of its controversial “Trending Topics” feature Thursday. It now shows each user a standardized list of news stories based on an automated survey of what a diverse collection of media outlets are covering. Previously, each individual user saw a personalized list of news stories in the Trending box.

This new system is designed to fight back against the rise of so-called “fake news,” which had inundated the social network over the past several months. Trending news was once staffed by human journalists, who were released from Facebook’s team last year after a repot from Gizmodo that political bias sometimes shaped which stories “trended” on the platform. Facebook responded by applying an algorithm to determine what news stories were trending which resulted in a number of fake news stories leading to a backlash from media sources and Facebook users alike … some renaming the social media giant, “Fakebook”.  

Look for the new rollout coming to your profile soon if you don’t already have it. https://www.facebook.com/help/1536354516620261/?helpref=hc_fnav

There’s a live feed going on under the sea. The Okeanos Explorer, a project from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, will head to the sea mounts 250 to 6,000 meters deep near American Samoa. The live streams are running from 2PM ET until 11PM. (That’s 11AM until 8PM, Pacific.) http://oceanexplorer.noaa.gov/okeanos/welcome.html

That’s it this week. Have a great weekend and may God bless you and keep you safe.
c-ya!
Jim

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