We often see three common computing mistakes and I want to share them with you. We sometimes see them in Remote Technical Support, in a customer’s home or business or over the phone. Take a look at these and see if you might be making one or more of them yourself.
Whenever I deliver a computer I’ve sold, there’s always the possibility of password trouble. When I go to set up a person’s email or some other type of account, not knowning a password can be a problem. Sure, the customer could get in the account on the old computer without putting in their password. However, a new computer has to be set up initially with the password. Without it, we can’t get into the account.
If the customer can’t find the correct password, we need to reset it. When we click the “Forgot Password” link, that’s when this mistake can be costly. We often find the software wants to send a code to a phone number or an email address that the customer no longer has. Disaster can ensue. We’ve even had to set up new accounts because there was no way to recover the password. The old account just dies away.
How do you avoid this mistake? If you get a new phone number or a new email address, be sure you log in to any account that uses them as password recovery. Not sure which of your accounts uses a phone number or email address as the password recovery method? You need to find out today. Log in to any of your accounts that use a password and check out the recovery method. If any information is incorrect, make the changes now while you can still get into the account.
The second of the three common computing mistakes is forgetting that smart phones and tablets are computers. Yes, you can make phone calls and face-to-face messaging. However, these devices are, first and foremost, computers. They store tons of information to which others might love to gain access. Yes, I know remembering secure passwords or even four character PINs can be troublesome. Still, you need to put protection on these devices.
Let me give you an example: a few weeks ago, after a concert at our church, a smart phone was found. When it was brought to me, the first thing I did was see if I could get into it. I touched the screen, scrolled to the side and “Bingo!” I was in. Finding the phone owner’s name was easy. I was able to contact her and have her come get her phone. On the surface, you might think this was a good thing. Having no password or PIN allowed me to find who had forgotten their phone. But wait, suppose I had not been an honest person? Maybe I would have gone through her phone and stolen pictures, documents and perhaps more. Besides, even if someone is honest, curiosity might get the better of them.
Avoid this mistake by always using a password or pin or on your smart phone or tablet.
While it’s difficult to list which of these three common computing mistakes is the most critical, this probably gets my vote. In today’s world, there are so many zero-day exploits and their existance makes updating crucial. Yes, it’s true that many operating systems (e.g., Windows OS, iOS, Google OS) and their applications often automatically install updates. However, sometimes these updates are delayed by hours or days. Worse yet, the computing user may decide to delay or even stop the updates. I understand why people sometimes delay updates. It is true that updates sometimes cause issues and they certainly can change settings and appearances. (Most of us hate change, don’t we?) Still, the negative reasons are far outweighed by the protection you get from updating as soon as possible.
Avoid this mstake by keeping your devices up-to-date.
(This last mistake is reason alone for you to become a Remote Technical Support customer!)