THE MOUSE TRAP – 03.07.17

–by Janice Weber

Janis Weber 2010
Janis Weber







Block Malicious Apps on Android and Apple Phones
It’s hard to get malicious apps on an Apple gadget because they have to sneak into the Apple Store first. However, Android lets you install apps from anywhere, including malicious text messages if you aren’t careful. Did you know that one-third of smartphone users don’t set up the lock screen on their phones? Many stick with the default “Swipe to unlock” screen, which won’t stop a bad guy or even a casual snooper. You need to use the lock screen that requires a password to continue, and come up with a good number code. This code should be something that isn’t easy to guess. Something like 1-2-3-4 or 0-0-0-0 isn’t going to cut it. Apple gadgets make you set up a passcode for the lock screen the first time you use them. However, if you created it a while ago, it might be time to beef it up. Go to Settings>Passcode to edit your passcode

A few taps and you could be giving hackers full access to your information, including text messages and banking information. Fortunately, a single setting can almost eliminate this threat. On your Android gadget, go to Settings > Security and uncheck “Unknown Sources.” This blocks Android from installing apps from anywhere but the Google Play store. While you might still run into occasional malicious apps, you won’t be tricked into installing them from malicious websites, text messages or emails.

It’s no secret that advertisers are tracking where you go online and your cellular provider is helping them. In fact, some providers, like Verizon, are doing it in a way that exposes you to hackers as well. Verizon is allowing customers to opt out of advertisers tracking you in April. You must log in to your account and find the security and preferences connection. You can also call Verizon at 866-211-0874 and request to opt-out of the Relevant Mobile Advertising program. This is a “Super Cookie.”

Find Your Lost or Stolen Phone
If your gadget is lost or stolen, tracking apps can tell you exactly where your phone is. These apps also let you wipe sensitive information remotely. If your phone does end up in the wrong hands, you can at least make sure somebody else doesn’t get your information. Apple users have Find My iPhone. To enable it, go to Settings > iCloud. Look for Find My iPhone and turn it on. Android users have Android Device Manager. To enable tracking, launch the app, link it to a Google account and follow the directions. For Windows phones, there’s the Find My Phone feature. To set it up, go to Settings > Find My Phone. Make sure the slider is set to on.

Most smart phones now have a way to not only find your phone but wipe your personal information from it in case you never see it again. Don’t forget to clear out everything if you are going to give or sell your phone. Theft may be down but you must always have your guard up.

Computer Classes Are Available
I will be teaching MS Word, two levels of MS Excel and MS PowerPoint in the Eberly Center on the campus of UT. Parking is free and the classes are very inexpensive. Please check out my website for dates and times. ( This semester all classes are held on Wednesday evenings from 5:30-8:30 p.m. If you prefer personal tutoring, that is my specialty. It’s just you and me. Call 419-530-8570 to register for classes at the UT campus. Contact me personally for tutoring 419-318-9112.

I will be teaching a beginners Facebook class at the Sylvania Senior Center April 26 and 27. Call 419-885-3913 to register. There is a small fee.

Let’s Get Together With Your Laptop

Would you like to have a mini informational get-together? Recently I have been hosting PC and iPhone/iPad classes anywhere that has Wi-Fi. Informal and informative. We can all use the same local Internet. We will pick a topic using open discussion. It is amazing how many different issues are solved. Bring a list of questions. Let’s get started.

I Make House Calls
I will come to your home or office and help you with almost any predicament including repairs, upgrades and general software or hardware issues. I can be your resident “Geek.” I have an endless amount of patience and knowledge with years of experience.

Give me a call at 419-318-9112.

References and rates are always available upon request. Don’t forget to sign up for my free newsletter at

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Janis Weber, B.A., owner of Ohio Computer Training & Support, is a professional computer adjunct instructor at UT and Lourdes University. All classes are offered through the Eberly Center at UT with free parking. E-mail any specific questions or comments to or contact her for assistance at 419-318-9112. Public classes are listed on her website The classes at UT offer inexpensive and totally nonintimidating. Call 419-530-8570 to register. Private tutoring and repairs are just a phone call or email away.