Microsoft Patches Two Critical Windows 10 Security Flaws | Digital Trends

If you’re running any version of Windows 10, you should update your computer as soon as possible. Microsoft recently alerted users that it patched two critical remote code execution (RCE) “wormable” vulnerabilities, which could have allowed hackers to spread malware to both your — and others — PCs without your knowledge or any interaction.

Source: Microsoft Patches Two Critical Windows 10 Security Flaws | Digital Trends

Windows Defender Gets Perfect Scores in Antivirus Test | Tom’s Hardware

Windows Defender is the default antivirus software that comes pre-installed on Windows 10 and is the antivirus software that I use here at “What’s On My PC”. The best part is that it is FREE!

Performance issues, privacy concerns, and other problems make it harder than ever to recommend third-party antivirus solutions on Windows. Now it’s about to become even more difficult: TechSpot reported that AV-Test, an independent organization that evaluates security products, gave Windows Defender perfect scores across its three evaluation categories after testing 20 antivirus products made for Windows 10 throughout May and June

Read More @ Tom’s Hardware

8 ways to improve security on smart home devices | Malwarebytes Labs

If you own any smart devices at home, you may want to read this article at Malwarebytes Labs that will teach you how to tighten the security on those devices. Like anything else that is connected to the internet, there is always the risk of being compromised.

Let’s face it: No matter how often we warn about the security concerns with smart home devices, they do make life more convenient—or at the very least, are a lot of fun to play with. It’s pretty clear this technology isn’t going away. So how can those who’ve embraced smart home technology do so while staying as secure as possible?

Here are eight easy ways to tighten up security on smart home devices so that users are as protected as possible while using the new technologies they love.

8 ways to improve security on smart home devices

Learn More @ Malwarebytes Labs

Windows 10 Version 1903 Will Be Coming Soon, Microsoft Warns | Redmondmag.com

Here at ‘What’s On My PC’ I am hearing the version 1903 feature update this is starting to show up on Windows 10 computers at home. As with any Windows 10 update, expect the process to be time-consuming (and leave the computer “on” during the update process).

Windows 10 version 1903 will be arriving soon for many of those individuals and organizations not presently using it.

Read More @ Redmondmag.com

Trump’s ‘infested’ tweets violate Twitter’s dehumanizing language rule | Mashable

Rats, rodents, maggots, crime. These words have literal meanings, but when they’re used to describe specific places or groups, they take on something more. It’s something CNN anchor Victor Blackwell pointed out in a moving segment about Trump’s racist use of the word “infested” in tweets — and also something that Twitter explicitly prohibits in its rules against “dehumanizing language.”

Read More @ Mashable

The PC market grows unexpectedly, thanks to tariff fears and the Windows 7 transition | PCWorld

The PC market grew by almost 5 percent in the second quarter, helped by Microsoft’s Windows 7 transition and a greater supply of Intel chips.

Overall, 64.858 million PCs were sold worldwide, IDC said, a 4.7 percent increase. A year ago, HP topped the list of worldwide vendors. For the second quarter, however, a whopping 18.2-percent increase in year-over-year sales propelled China’s Lenovo to the top of the list.

Read More @ PCWorld

What is the differences between 1G, 2G, 3G, 4G, and 5G?

Computer and smartphone users at home are beginning to get curious about the new 5G cellular technology. To help you understand what the differences are between the different generations of cellular transmission technologies, I extracted the below information from a PCMag article (see source link below).

The G in this 5G means it’s a generation of wireless technology. While most generations have technically been defined by their data transmission speeds, each has also been marked by a break in encoding methods, or “air interfaces,” that make it incompatible with the previous generation.

1G was analog cellular. 2G technologies, such as CDMA, GSM, and TDMA, were the first generation of digital cellular technologies. 3G technologies, such as EVDO, HSPA, and UMTS, brought speeds from 200kbps to a few megabits per second. 4G technologies, such as WiMAX and LTE, were the next incompatible leap forward, and they are now scaling up to hundreds of megabits and even gigabit-level speeds.

5G brings three new aspects to the table: greater speed (to move more data), lower latency (to be more responsive), and the ability to connect a lot more devices at once (for sensors and smart devices).

Source: PCMag – What Is 5G?

My Review of the Actiontec ScreenBeam Mini 2

The Actiontec ScreenBeam Mini 2 is a wireless stick that plugs into an HDMI connection (or port) on your television. It is powered via a USB connection, either by your TV or by the included power block. This device, I rate as “excellent” in giving you the ability to wirelessly mirror what you see on your Android phone onto a TV or projector.

Actiontec ScreenBeam Mini 2

The key to using this device is that your Android phone must have mirroring capability (Miracast), which most of the modern day Android phones possess. In other words, when you get this setup (which is very easy – plug and play) you will be able to see what is on your phone on your TV or projector. This allows you to use your phones data connection to view pics, play games, read the news and stream video, such as YouTube, Hulu, Pluto, etc… I do recommend that you make sure you have an unlimited data connection through your cell service before using this device, which most people do these days. The real feature with Screenbeam is that you do not need a wi-fi connection or router for this to work; instead, Screenbeam wirelessly communicates directly with your smartphone.

Why did I purchase Screenbeam? I have an RV, way out in no man’s land, where I have managed to pull in a high-end 3G data signal using a booster. I use Screenbeam connected to the TV in my RV to stream video from my smartphone. It has literally opened up a whole new world in watching TV during the evenings when I am camping. Anything that I can pull down on my smartphone I can watch on the big screen. Screenbeam, so far, for me, has worked flawlessly.

Cost? The Screenbeam Mini 2 will run you around $40. To me, this an inexpensive device that works very well and would serve you for all sorts of purposes; such as using your phone to project a report or video in a conference meeting scenario or for home entertainment (gaming and movies). The selling point to me was that I can do a direct wireless connection where I do not need a wireless router like you do with the Google Chromecast or Amazon’s Fire Stick; pLus, this thing is very portable.

Where can I get the Screenbeam Mini 2?  My recommendation is to purchase it through Amazon (see link below); that way, easy to return if you do not like it, plus you can see the reviews. I can tell you that the Screenbeam Mini 2 is a great device that I am glad (and excited) to have purchased.

CLICK HERE to VIEW and PURCHASE THE SCREENBEAM MINI 2

Google just took a strange step towards replacing Android with something better | BGR

Android might be one of the two most important mobile operating systems right now, and the biggest one by market share, but it certainly won’t be around forever. That’s why Google is already working on a universal OS that would one day replace Android without users having to worry about it. Fuchsia, as it’s called for the time being, will run seamlessly on a variety of devices, regardless of screen size. It’ll deliver faster updates and better privacy features, according to some reports, and it’ll support Android apps as well as native Fuchsia apps.

Source: Google just took a strange step towards replacing Android with something better – BGR

LG Stylo 5 has launched on Cricket Wireless | Phandroid

These are decent phones for the money. I had a couple of these (older model version) and just handed them down to family members. No other phone, at this cost point, has a stylus and does everything most people need. I have not seen these hit Amazon yet, but get this. You can get a case for the LG Stylo 5 at Amazon – click here – to see!

When it comes to smartphones that come with a stylus, you might probably think of the Samsung Galaxy Note series of handsets. If you’d rather not spend so much money on a high-end flagship like the Note 9, then you might be interested in checking out the recently-announced LG Stylo 5.

Source: LG Stylo 5 has launched on Cricket Wireless

Is YouTube down? Google Cloud outage hits popular websites and services like YouTube, Gmail, Snapchat, others | CBS News

A widespread Google Cloud outage hit Sunday, rendering popular sites and apps like YouTube and Gmail unusable for many users for a few hours, CNET reports. Google’s Cloud Computing Engine and Cloud Networking services began experiencing issues as of 4 p.m. ET, according to the status page on company’s website.

Source: Is YouTube down? Google Cloud outage hits popular websites and services like YouTube, Gmail, Snapchat, others – CBS News

Parents just as addicted to their smartphones as their kids | New York Post

More than one-third of teenagers and over one-quarter of parents wake up and check their mobile device for something other than the time at least once a night, according to a new report by Common Sense Media, a San Francisco-based organization that examines the impact of technology and media on families. The organization surveyed 1,000 parents and their children.

Family of four on couch all looking at smartphones.

Source: Parents just as addicted to their smartphones as their kids

Cashless stores are the hot new thing. Now politicians are stepping in | CNET

Cashless stores and events are just starting to crop up in the retail landscape with much hoopla — consider the splashy launches of Amazon Go stores —  but they’re already running into hurdles from legislators in cities and states around the country. These governments are concerned that what some see as technological innovation could actually widen societal gaps between those who have access to financial services and those who don’t.

Read More @ CNET

Quick Tip: 3 Tips To Follow To Avoid Handheld Phone Use While Driving

Memorial Day weekend is here… Hooray! During this time many, many people will be on the road and many, many people will commit the ultimate driving sin; AND, that is using your handheld phone while driving.

It only takes that millisecond of distraction
that ultimately can change your life and the life of others; sometimes, forever…

Texting and phone use are the leading causes of distracted driving. The laws in many States prohibit the use of a handheld phone while driving. This includes the writing, sending or reading of a text or electronic message. Avoid a fine and park the phone before you drive.

Here are 3 tips to follow:

  • Pull over in a “safe” location if you need to call or text
  • Use your passenger as your designated texter and caller
  • Secure your phone in the trunk, glove box or back seat while you drive

All distractions endanger drivers, passengers and pedestrians. Most distractions involve cognitive and sensory distraction. When you make a call on a hand-held phone you are not only holding and looking at the phone, you are also dialing, listening and thinking about the conversation.

Driver distractions include:

Texting
Using a cell phone or smartphone
Eating and drinking
Talking to passengers
Grooming
Reading, including maps
Using a navigation system
Watching a video
Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player

Remember distractions are:

Visual – looking at something other than the road
Auditory – hearing something not related to driving
Manual – manipulating something other than the wheel
Cognitive – thinking about something other than driving

What’s new with the Settings app for the Windows 10 May 2019 Update | Windows Central

In addition to the new features and enhancements bundled with the May 2019 Update (version 1903), Windows 10 is also introducing a slew of changes to the Settings app to help users customize and modify system settings.

Starting with version 1903, the Settings experience revamps the homepage with a new header design (controlled feature) similar to the one found in the Microsoft account page online, and you’ll find many new settings and tweaks.

Source: What’s new with the Settings app for the Windows 10 May 2019 Update | Windows Central

How Google’s rift with Huawei could change Android and smartphones forever | PCWorld

A bad month has just gotten a whole lot worse for Huawei. According to a Reuters report and confirmed by the two companies, Google is preparing to cut off the China-based smartphone maker’s Android license, preventing future Huawei phones (such as the upcoming Mate 30) from using the Play Store and Google’s popular apps and services.

google android

The bombshell comes just days after President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order barring U.S. companies from using telecommunications equipment made by firms that “pose a national security risk.” While the order didn’t single out Huawei, the Commerce Department simultaneously added Huawei to its Entity List, effectively banning the smartphone maker from buying parts and components from U.S. companies without explicit government approval. Together, the two moves make it extremely difficult for any U.S. company to do business with Huawei.

To read this article in full, please click here

 

Google cuts off some business with Huawei, report says – CNET

If you own a Huawei phone, as I do, it appears we will no longer be getting any Android OS and security updates… Needless to say, “I am not a happy camper”…  Also, appears that any new phones distributed by Huawei will be cut off from the Google Play Store, as well.

Huawei is losing Android operating system updates, a source close to the matter told Reuters, and Huawei’s upcoming phones outside of China will no longer get access to apps and services like Gmail and Google Play. Google also will no longer offer technical support to Huawei, the source told Reuters.

Source: Google cuts off some business with Huawei, report says – CNET

Systems with small disks won’t be able to install Windows 10 May 2019 update @ Ars Technica

Both 32- and 64-bit requirements have been increased.

Previously, 32-bit Windows had a minimum storage requirement of 16GB, and 64-bit Windows needed 20GB. Both of these were extremely tight, leaving little breathing room for actual software, but technically this was enough space for everything to work. That minimum has now been bumped up: it’s 32GB for both 32- and 64-bit versions of Windows.

Systems with small disks won’t be able to install Windows 10 May 2019 update

Source: Systems with small disks won’t be able to install Windows 10 May 2019 update | Ars Technica

The NEW “Schedule” Email Option Now Rolling Out To Gmail

Gmail users, the NEW “schedule” email option is now rolling out. Go into your Gmail, click on compose, enter a recipient’s email address and if you go to the bottom left corner where it displays the send button (see below) you will see a small down arrow. Click on the down arrow and then click on “Schedule Send”.  From that point forward it is self-explanatory. You can then select a date and time that you wish for the email to be sent.

Gmail send later

gmail-schedule-send.png

I am thinking of scheduling and sending an email for far out in the future, beyond my demise, to let everyone know, I am spiritually still with them and that there is Gmail in Heaven.

Ellen DeGeneres giveaway scam spreading on social media | Malwarebytes Labs

To my reader’s at “What’s On My PC”… If you use Facebook, take a moment to read this. I have seen some of my Facebook friends being hooked into this. It is a “scam”. PLEASE, take my advice “Believe Nothing and Verify Everything”; especially, on social media.

Scammers are pushing multiple fake Facebook profiles of Ellen DeGeneres, popular US TV show host and producer, with the goal of tricking people into jumping through a few money-making hoops. This isn’t a sophisticated scam. It isn’t hacking the Gibson. It won’t be the focus of a cutting edge infosec talk. However, it’s certainly doing some damage—up to a point. This scam is a victim of its own ambition.

Ellen DeGeneres giveaway scam spreading on social media

Source: Ellen DeGeneres giveaway scam spreading on social media – Malwarebytes Labs | Malwarebytes Labs

Latest Windows 10 Update Causing Freezes, Sluggish Performance | ExtremeTech

To summarize the article from “ExtremeTech” on this issue:

Microsoft has mucked something up again. The latest patch update (KB 4493470) released on Patch Tuesday, April 9, appears to have caused significant performance problems for multiple groups of users.

Some users are reporting freezes upon login, while others claim lengthy times to boot to desktop. It sounds as if either the same issue is causing both, or that some individuals may be rebooting before the desktop has loaded, thinking the machine is permanently frozen.

The issues seem linked to the use of antivirus products from specific manufacturers, including Avast, AVG, and Sophos, with Sophos coming in for particular problems.

Windows10PLAEN

Source: Latest Windows 10 Update Causing Freezes, Sluggish Performance – ExtremeTech

Cadillac brings ‘hands-free’ Super Cruise feature to more cars | Mashable

Super Cruise works a lot like Autopilot, with sensors and cameras and GPS guiding the car, but only on certain highways across the U.S. and Canada, where the computer knows the route. Unlike with Autopilot, drivers don’t have to keep their hands on the wheel. A small camera trained on the driver detects when drivers need to snap to attention —and then notifies and alerts drivers to get back into driving mode. Until then, you are literally just sitting behind the wheel, watching the road go by.

CT5 sedan comes with Super Cruise, which makes it feel ALMOST like a self-driving car.

Source: Cadillac brings ‘hands-free’ Super Cruise feature to more cars

Amazon is reportedly preparing to launch a free music streaming service | BGR

Amazon, sources have told Billboard, is in talks to launch an ad-supported music streaming service that could be announced as soon as this week. The company already has a popular channel through which to market the service for free — its line of Echo speakers — and the intent here seems to be to go head-to-head against Spotify.

Amazon music

Source: Amazon is reportedly preparing to launch a free music streaming service – BGR

You can upgrade to the Windows 10 May 2019 Update right now (but you shouldn’t) | gHacks Tech News

To my reader’s at “What’s On My PC”, this update is a major update and will come to you, as suggested and recommended. You can update now but beware of the risks involved.

Microsoft plans to release the May 2019 Update for Windows 10 at the end of May 2019. The update will be rolled out slowly to devices at that point and it will take months before a good percentage of devices has been upgraded.

Source: You can upgrade to the Windows 10 May 2019 Update right now (but you shouldn’t) – gHacks Tech News

Google Docs will let you natively edit, collaborate on Microsoft Office files soon | The Verge

This is big news…

Editing Microsoft Office files in Google Docs is a pain. You can view them there, but you’ve previously had to convert them to Google’s format before you could edit, comment, and collaborate inside Docs. That’s about to change: Google just announced that it’s adding native support for Microsoft’s Word, Excel, and PowerPoint formats — like .docx, .xls, and .ppt — which will let you do real-time collaboration in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

Source: Google Docs will let you natively edit, collaborate on Microsoft Office files soon – The Verge

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