AI is advancing incredibly fast. The powerful technology is capable of duplicating voices that sound like anyone, music that top artists could have written, and answering complex questions in plain language.
The potential to make our lives better is remarkable. And so are the chances we'll be victims of realistic scams involving synthesized voices of people we love.
After a successful introduction in Canada earlier this year, Netflix is about to expand its password-sharing policy to the US. In the coming weeks, US users of Netflix will have to pay $6 a month more to share their account with someone who doesn’t live in the same household. For a primary account holder to use Netflix while traveling, they’ll have to log in to the app at least once a month at their primary residence.
Facebook has agreed to pay $725 million for sharing personal information about its users with advertisers as a result of lawsuits filed five years ago. Anyone who used Facebook between mid-2007 and the end of last year can apply to receive a portion of the settlement money — a very small portion — likely to be a few dollars at most. To fill out the application for payment, do a web search on “Facebook Privacy Settlement” and submit the form by August 25.
Usernames and passwords will be with us for years, but the next generation of login technology is about to take off. Wired says a group of the world’s largest tech companies, including Google, Microsoft, Apple, American Express, Intel, and Qualcomm, have agreed on the implementation of the technology, called “Passkeys,” so it will work seamlessly across devices and websites. A face or fingerprint scan linked to a user’s electronic devices is at the foundation of passkeys.
In the past year, the number of users locked out of their social media accounts has almost tripled.
Account takeovers are the most dangerous trend in social media because, once scammers gain access to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, or other accounts, they can masquerade as you and:
> Steal your personal information
> Ask your family for money
> Read your private messages
> Request and post personal information about your friends
> Break into other online accounts where you use the same password
Twitter and other social platforms are introducing paid accounts with a "verification" logo. But that won't make accounts completely safe.
So, remember to:
> Use a different password for each of your social media accounts
> Use two-factor authentication to log on to the accounts, which all platforms offer
> Limit the amount of personal information you post and include in your profile
You can download and print more ways to keep your social media accounts safe by clicking on the thumbnail below.
Sources: NYTimes, CNN, CNBC, Axios, Forbes, Cybernews, The Guardian
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"Are authenticator apps better to use than a password manager?"
Password managers and authenticator apps work differently — you can use both to protect yourself online. Password managers create, store, and manage passwords for all your accounts by generating strong and unique passwords and storing them in an encrypted database. Popular brands of password managers include 1Password, Dashlane, BitWarden, and NordPass.
Authenticator apps generate one-time codes that are valid for a short time, preventing unauthorized access to your accounts even if your password has been compromised. Popular authenticator apps include Google Authenticator, Microsoft Authenticator, and Authy.
Password managers are designed to protect all your online accounts. Authenticator apps only work with some of them. You can use them both at the same time.
"Whom do you contact if you open a link that isn’t safe and realize it afterward?"
Start now by installing and running anti-virus software on your personal computer.
If you think you’ve clicked on a suspicious link or downloaded a risky attachment, disconnect from the internet by turning off Wi-Fi or unplugging the cable. This will prevent data from being transferred between your device and the malicious website.
Next, use anti-virus software to run a security scan on your computer to check for malware or viruses.
If you entered passwords or sensitive information on a website, immediately change your passwords to those sites.
If the suspicious link was sent to you by someone else, let them know that the link may be malicious. Also, report the incident to IT if it happened on a work computer.
"How do I properly dispose of an old desktop computer, a laptop, or a mobile device so that data on the hard drive is not compromised?"
Before you sell or throw away your device, back up the files you want to keep. Putting the files in the trash and emptying it isn’t enough.
Then use the built-in tool on your computer to re-format the hard drive. That will completely erase the data.
If you're still concerned about the security of your data, you can physically destroy the hard drive by drilling holes through it, smashing it with a hammer, or using a professional hard drive shredder.
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