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  • Writer's pictureTim Jones

A quick search on Google returns a definition of Social Engineering as;

(in the context of information security) the use of deception to manipulate individuals into divulging confidential or personal information that may be used for fraudulent purposes.

"people with an online account should watch for phishing attacks and other forms of social engineering"

It is a type of hacking that doesn't rely on coding or manipulation of computers, but rather - it's the manipulation of people!

Phishing is defined by google as; the fraudulent practice of sending emails or other messages purporting to be from reputable companies in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers. It is relatively common.

Vishing (as shown in the video below) is where the information is gathered using voice, where the visher is manipulating the other party into providing information. It's interesting that vishers have to have a good level of skill & be able to quickly think on their feet in order to get the job done effectively. Some of them are even known to do standup comedy open mic nights in order to fine tune their ability to think fast and keep calm.

This post will hopefully bring more awareness to the fact that these types of hacks are a real thing that you should act accordingly, and think carefully about who is actually calling you & what information you provide.

  • Writer's pictureTim Jones

gif of a landline type telephone

Be aware of common tactics: Cold callers often try to use high-pressure tactics, such as offering limited-time discounts or claiming to be from a government agency. Knowing about these tactics can help you recognise when someone is trying to scam you.

Don't give out personal information: Cold callers may try to get you to give them personal information, such as your address, bank account number, or social security number. Don't give out this information over the phone, even if the caller claims to be from a legitimate company. You can check at a later time by contacting the company yourself & checking if it was really them calling.

Don't trust caller ID: Cold callers may use caller ID spoofing to make it appear as though they are calling from a legitimate company or government agency. Don't trust caller ID, and be cautious even if the caller claims to be from a company or agency you are familiar with.

person being rushed and annoyed on the telephone

Don't be rushed: Cold callers may try to pressure you into making a decision on the spot. Take your time, and don't feel rushed into making a decision or giving out information. See how they react to you suggesting they call back while you think about it.

Hang up: If you suspect that a caller is a cold caller, it's okay to hang up. You have no obligation to stay on the line with someone who is trying to scam you.

Use caller blocking tools: Many phones have built-in caller blocking tools that allow you to block specific numbers or block all unknown numbers. Using these tools can help you avoid unwanted calls from cold callers.

Report suspicious calls: If you receive a call from someone who you suspect is a cold caller, always delay them & never allow remote access to your computer. You can report the call to the OFT (Office of Fair Trading). Discuss it with friends and family too - if it really is something important you can deal with it another time by going through the known/good ways to do so.

cat under lamp sitting by laptop on a table

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  • Writer's pictureTim Jones

When it comes to choosing a new computer, one of the most common decisions that people face is whether to go with a Mac or a PC. Both options have their own sets of pros and cons, and the right choice for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences.

table of computer manufacturers with marketshare percentages for 2021 & 2022
Computer Manufacturers market shares 2021 & 2022

One of the main differences between Macs and PCs is the operating system. Macs run on Apple's proprietary operating system, macOS, while PCs run on Microsoft's Windows operating system. Both operating systems have their own unique features and capabilities, and which one you prefer will depend on your personal preferences and needs.

Macs are generally known for their sleek design and intuitive user interface. They also tend to be more stable and less prone to crashes and viruses compared to PCs. Macs are also often favoured by creative professionals, such as photographers and graphic designers, due to the robust suite of creative software that is available for macOS.

On the other hand, PCs are generally more affordable than Macs and have a wider variety of hardware options. This makes them a good choice for people who need a powerful computer for tasks such as video editing or gaming. PCs also tend to have more compatibility with older software and hardware, which can be a significant factor for some users.

Another factor to consider when deciding between a Mac and a PC is the ecosystem of devices and services that each company offers. Apple has a wide range of devices, such as iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches, which are all designed to work seamlessly with each other and with macOS. Microsoft also offers a range of devices, such as Surface tablets and Xbox consoles, which are designed to work with Windows.

In terms of software and app availability, both Macs and PCs have a wide range of options. Both platforms have a wide range of productivity and creative software available, as well as a vast selection of apps for tasks such as communication and entertainment.

Ultimately, the decision between a Mac and a PC will come down to your personal preferences and needs. If you prioritise design and stability, a Mac may be the right choice for you. If you need a powerful and affordable computer, or if you have specific software or hardware requirements, a PC may be a better fit. Consider your budget, the types of tasks you will be using your computer for, and the ecosystem of devices and services that each company offers to help make the decision that is right for you.

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