Tag Archives: Security

Don’t Fall Victim to Macintosh Help and Support Scams!

Don't fall victim to Macintosh Support Scams!

Don’t fall victim to Macintosh support scams including fake Mac tech support companies and anti-virus software. They will capture your personal data and credit card numbers!

When you see pop-ups and warnings that your Macintosh may be infected by a virus or spyware while surfing the web, don’t fall for it! Most of these scary popup warnings are nothing more than a scam to get your credit card numbers, passwords, or social security numbers! These fake companies (usually not based in the United States) generate these very official-looking and scary warnings that appear on your screen warning you that you have severe system problems and viruses on your Macintosh. The good news is almost 99.9% of the time, you and your Mac are perfectly safe.

If you decide to take these scam companies up on their offers of free diagnostic software, free tech support and more, you will most likely be handing over crucial and personal data that will come back to haunt you! The general way these companies scam you is by tricking you into installing software onto your Macintosh that allows them full access into your computer remotely, which in turn they can keep this access as long as they wish. They will then often generate fake messages with this software, such as leading you to believe you have a virus or spyware that can only be removed by them–for a huge fee. We have had customers fork over hundreds of dollars to these companies, for basically no reason. Once they take off these fake viruses, their software just generates more of them down the road, forcing you to give them more money.

Another way fake companies get your credit card numbers and other personal data is to masquerade as a real Apple Macintosh support business. These offshore companies often pay for higher Google results and trick you into thinking they are actually Apple Computer, by using domain names that appear to be related to Apple (they aren’t). Once you call these fake Mac support companies, they ask for access remotely to your Mac, or, credit card numbers and other personal data.

Lastly, another big scam is the “Clean My Mac” software that is going around the Internet via website ads and popup windows. This software usually is malicious and does nothing on your Mac except generate ways to steal your data and credit card numbers. The jury is out on the infamous “MacKeeper” software that you see on a daily basis–We feel that whether this is malicious software or not, our gut feeling is to stay away from it. Consult with a reputable firm to talk about cleaning and optimizing your Macintosh with genuine software such as Cocktail for the Mac, which we’ve talked about before. The Macintosh for the most part can take care of itself–it usually doesn’t need help from these online optimization and cleaning software titles–worry about backing up your data first and foremost instead of chasing these possibly damaging software titles.

Please contact Capital Mac Service before you attempt to install any third-party software to clean or disinfect your Mac, no matter how scary these warnings appear to be. Don’t call anyone on the web or visit websites unless you are 100% sure they are either Apple Computer, or, a reputable local Macintosh help and support firm. We can work backwards with you to see where these warnings came from and hopefully shut the doors to these malicious companies.

Another Day, Another Phishing Scam.

Phishing Scam

Don’t fall for these realistic-looking phishing scams!

I just got this screenshot from a Capital Mac Service customer that looks pretty scary–fortunately, this is yet another version of a typical scam going around the Internet. Basically, just clicking on a weblink brought this webpage up, which basically traps you on the page–you cannot get off of it without force quitting your browser. These types of scams try to trick you into thinking you have a virus or spyware on your Mac (or PC and Android as I found out by digging deeper). When you click through, they ask for a credit card number to remove this fake spyware and virus from your computer. If you visit the page where this scam comes from (see it here), you can see all the various directories with various scary webpages warning you about this virus you may have. They have different scareware pages for different operating systems! DO NOT fall for these scams when surfing the web. Take a screenshot and contact us if you like so we can educate further on the dangers of these fake and fraudulent sites trying to steal your credit card and other personal information.

Going somewhere? Make sure your Macintosh laptop doesn’t get stolen!

Traveling is a big part of being either a business professional, seasonal traveler, or, even a college student. Unfortunately, when you are out and about, this is the best time for computer theft. It literally only takes a second while you are in a rest room or at the counter getting a cup of coffee for that $1,000+ computer to simply vanish, only to show up on eBay someday. Apple used to include a special locking slot on all of their laptops, which would allow you to buy a Kensington locking kit which looked like this. However, it seems like Apple has dropped this trend and a lot of today’s Macbook models no longer have this important locking slot. Fortunately for you, this is not really an issue anymore!

There are still various options to get that laptop locked up when you are at the library or the coffee shop and I’m going to introduce you to a product from Kensington, which is an aftermarket locking kit for your Macbook, Macbook Air, or, any computer or tablet that doesn’t feature a locking slot. This simple $25 kit will allow you to add a locking mechanism easily and cheaply to any Macbook that does not have the necessary slot built-in. Check it out and purchase this amazing device on Amazon by clicking here. This is a great idea for a college gift!

Do I need any particular antivirus software for my new (or old) Mac?

Capital Mac Norton AntivirusThe easy answer: probably not. In the 13 years I was with Apple Computer, I saw about two distinct and separate viruses on a Mac. One of them was a simple Microsoft Word virus that only affected Word documents. The other was a real-deal virus, however, Apple caught that one before anyone really had contracted it.

So, do you need Macintosh antivirus software? Probably not.

I’d be more worried about you losing your data to a hard drive or directory damage issue than getting a virus. Most people on any computer platform equate any problem–big or small–to a virus. Most of the customers I dealt with while working with Apple began with “My computer isn’t working. It’s probably a virus.” Obviously from our end, this was never, ever a virus and almost always a directory damage issue or software problem.

If you were to invest in a virus software for your Mac for peace of mind sake, I would recommend something simple as the Norton suite of antivirus software, if you really want to still run one on your system. Be aware that these types of software will possibly reduce the speed of your Mac, since it has to scan every file every few minutes.

If you are gun-shy about Mac antivirus, or, if you just have questions, just contact us at Capital Mac Service and we can cover your options!

 

 

Allow Mac os X Mail to Add Gmail

Having Trouble Adding Gmail to Mac OS X Mail?

Having trouble adding your Gmail account to Mac OS X Mail software? It’s most likely an easy fix, as I found out today. On this particular Macintosh, they were running an older version of the operating system. Apparently, that version of Mac OS X Mail is not considered secure in the eyes of Gmail and they block access to it. Here’s how to fix it:

First, visit http://www.google.com/accounts/DisplayUnlockCaptcha and sign in with your Gmail username and password. If necessary, enter the letters in the distorted picture.

Secondly, and most important, visit this website: Allow less secure apps and choose “Allow” to let less secure apps access your Google account. This is a less secure option, but, it may be the only way to get your older Mail software to allow access to Gmail.

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