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January 29th, 2018:

Facebook Security – 7 Privacy Principles for 2018

Facebook has just issued a list of 7 Privacy Principles to commemorate “Data Privacy” day on FEB 28th. 

Giving You More Control of Your Privacy on Facebook

Facebook’s Privacy Principles – Facebook was built to bring people closer together.  It’s important that you have choices when it comes to how your data is used. These are the principles that guide how we approach privacy at Facebook.

1. We give you control of your privacy
2. We help people understand how their data is used
3. We design privacy into our products from the outset
4. We work hard to keep your information secure
5. You own and can delete your information
6. Improvement is constant
7. We are accountable

Mobile Phone Technology – Samsung Galaxy S9 early preview

Some early previews of the new Samsung Galaxy S9 model are starting to circulate prior to the official announcement on Feb. 25th.

Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ could feature Intelligent Scan, 3D stickers, and Tag shot camera mode

We already know what the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ look like, their specs, and other details, before they’re officially unveiled on February 25 at Mobile World Conference in Barcelona. We’re also learning about possible included features, including Intelligent Scan, 3D stickers, and a new camera mode called Tag Shot.

Intelligent Scan – The strings reveal that Intelligent Scan “combines face and iris scanning to improve accuracy and security even in low or very bright light.” The above video will likely be included as an explainer when you’re setting up the feature.  Intelligent Scan looks to be a replacement for entering a password, inputting a PIN, or drawing a pattern.

3D stickers – Depth-sensing editing will apparently let you add stickers or images to pictures that were taken with dual cameras and then adjust the depth of the stickers or images.

Tag shot – lets you take pictures and tag them with the current location and weather information.

IRS – How to prevent TAX Fraud in 2018

US CERT is sharing IRS theme of “Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week”.  One new tip for 2018 is that W2 forms now contain a new code that can be optionally used with electronic filers.  These 3 links below contain a # of beneficial tips to help prevent tax filers from fraud. 

https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/current-activity/2018/01/29/Tax-Identity-Theft-Awareness-Week

NCCIC/US-CERT encourages consumers to review IRS publication Taxes.Security.Together. and NCCIC/US-CERT Tip Preventing and Responding to Identity Theft. Users can also participate in a series of free webinars and chats on avoiding tax identity theft, hosted by the Federal Trade Commission, IRS, Department of Veterans Affairs, and others.

Leadership – Five steps to build trust in the workplace during 2018

The John Maxwell leadership training center shares an excellent article in looking ahead to challenges of 2018.  This article offers 5 techniques for trust-building within the workplace

http://johnmaxwellcompany.com/blog/how-to-build-trust-in-the-workplace

The importance of trust between you and your leaders cannot be overstated. Leaders can cultivate a high-trust culture or create culture of distrust that increases tension, puts people “on guard” at all times, and hurts productivity.

Here are five practical ways to build trust with the leaders in your company.

1.Practice the 30-second rule. Simply put, within the first 30 seconds of a conversation you should say something encouraging to the person you’re addressing. It’s an easy way to build rapport and deposit good will into that person’s emotional bank account.

2.Say the right words at the right time. This tactic requires some patience and discretion. Remember to consider what you are saying before you say it. Ask yourself: Is it necessary? Is it helpful? Is it uplifting?  Be authentic, especially when offering a compliment. Nothing destroys trust faster than insincere praise.

3.Offer your very best.  This rule basically states that you should be prepared to voluntarily give of yourself beyond what is required. All too often, people try to skate through a project or initiative with the minimum amount of effort. Giving maximum effort—especially when you don’t have to and your team knows it—will only solidify and build trust.

4.Keep your eye off the mirror. Most people readily admit that unselfishness is a positive quality.  Begin by looking each day for a way to set aside personal needs and intentionally help someone else without expecting anything in return.

5.Remember a person’s story. A great way to establish relationship is to ask another person to share his or her story.  Learning a person’s story is a great way to connect—while remembering the details of his or her unique journey is a great way to reinforce relationship

Malware – Recent YouTube ads infected with Cryptocurrency Mining code

As extensive computing power is required to harvest cryptocurrency using complex algorithms, a recent malware trend has been to link computers visiting a website into the process.  While most of the malware agents have likely been removed, users must remain careful at all times while online.

Cryptocurrency Mining Ads Sighted On YouTube: Report

Video giant YouTube is the latest site to be hit with reports of advertisements that secretly utilize unwitting users’ computing power to mine cryptocurrency. According to a number of scattered international reports gathered by Ars Technica from Japan, France, Taiwan, Spain, and Italy, antivirus programs are finding cryptocurrency mining code running on users’ computers when they go to YouTube. Most of the mining ads in question seem to be mining a type of cryptocurrency called Monero and are JavaScript-based, allowing them to do their work through a seemingly normal ad on any web page. YouTube, for its part, has yet to put out any sort of official statement about this phenomenon. Most of the information about the ads was gleaned by security analyst firm TrendMicro, as well as various antivirus programs such as Avast.

Microsoft Security — OOB Windows Update to fix recent Intel Spectre issues

A Microsoft Security out of band release for Windows Update has been just issued.  It is designed to fix recent Intel Spectre issues

https://www.pcworld.com/article/3251825/security/microsofts-issues-another-emergency-windows-patch-to-pull-intels-buggy-spectre-fix.html

 

If you’ve noticed any unexpected reboots or PC instability as a result of the recent Spectre patches, there’s a solution: Microsoft has issued an emergency Windows patch that rolls back the recent Spectre mitigations.

Confused? It’s a bit complicated. After the intial Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilites were disclosed, both Intel and Microsoft hustled out patches to mitigate the problem. Unfortunately, Intel’s latest microcode updates—and the BIOS updates from PC makers based upon them—were themselves buggy, causing instability, reboots, and data loss in some PCs.

Microsoft’s latest patch (KB4078130) allows people with affected systems to download the patch via the Microsoft Update Catalog, which disables the mitigations for the “Spectre variant 2.”