March 18, 2013 - Hammondsport Mac Users Group

ATTENDING: Tom B, Larry T, Bob S, Jerry L, Bob G, Gene N and Ed M.

TOPIC : Internet Safety

Using their own experiences as a guide, the group was asked to share advice and tips that might help a new user to avoid troubles on the internet. Five broad areas were discussed :

1) Browsing

2) Sharing

3) Downloading

4) Buying

5) Guarding

Tom used a small Wacom Tablet with Graphic Converter for direct note taking, viewable via wall projection - several screen views could be shrunk down or expanded via the F3 Key* using Exposé to quickly add new comments (see example) - notes were saved as GIFs for later use.       *F9 Key on older keyboards


BEST ADVICE : You always leave a digital trail whenever you travel on the internet.

- - - - - CACHES - how to empty temporary images? Go to:
Safari Menu>Safari>Empty Cache...

- - - - - HISTORY - how to clear temporary URL addresses of sites you have visited? Go to: Safari Desktop Menu>History>Clear History...

- - - - - COOKIES - how to get rid of temporary cookies? Go to:
Safari Desktop Menu>Safari>Preferences>Privacy>Remove Website Data>Remove All

- - - - - WEBPAGE PREVIEWS - this folder can be manually emptied by Select All and sending images to Trash - also the folder can be locked via 'Get Info' so that it will not be used to hold future images - to locate this folder, go to :
Finder>User>Library>Caches>>Webpage Previews

Apple OSX provides a Guest Account which assures that every file is automatically reset to default when the guest logs out

- - - - - I.P. ADDRESS - every device connected to the public Internet is assigned a unique number known as an Internet Protocol (IP) address. It consists of 4 numbers, separated by periods and looks something like Various companies (such as StatCounter) offer tools to help web designers gather data of their site visitors by tracking characteristics and trends using the IP address numbers. Look up your IP address . Test your internet speed .

iC3 - government website for internet crime complaints - also good tips and helpful tools - read the latest scam alerts - take a quick test to check your scam IQ.


- - - - - Jerry recommended the following add-on extensions for browsers :

Adblock Plus - add this free extension to your Firefox browser to block unwanted ads - read more.

AdBlock for Safari - read about and download here

BlockSite - free extension for Firefox browser which blocks websites of your choice - additionally, this extension will disable all hyperlinks to these websites, by just displaying the link text without the clicking functionality.

    FlashBlock - never be annoyed by a Flash animation again - blocks ALL Flash content from loading - it then leaves placeholders on the webpage that allow you to click to download and then view the Flash content.

Web of Trust - browser extension that shows you which websites you can trust based on millions of users’ experiences around the world to help you stay safe when you search, surf, and shop online



BEST ADVICE: Don't share any more personal data than absolutely necesssary.


- - - - - SPAM - use the Junk filter in your Apple Mail application

- - - - - DO NOT CLICK on any links in spam mail, even the 'cancel now' link.

- - - - - SET UP a free on-line account as an alternative to be used when needed for filling in forms and applications - Yahoo Mail and Google Gmail are easy.

- - - - - PHISHING - phony letters (or phone calls) asking for personal information, often accompanied with names of people you know - verify by going online to the actual site or calling back the official listed number.

- - - - - BOUNCE unsolicted or unwanted e-mails in Mail>Message>Bounce - the sender will receive a message that account does not exist.

- - - - - ETIQUETTE - read some good hints regarding e-mail sending and receiving.

- - - - - BLIND CARBON COPY - don't send or forward e-mails with multiple addresses visible (unless there is a reason for everyone to see them) - use the 'BCC' feature of your Mail application - see how to use BCC for group mailings and also how to add a BCC field to your letter.




BEST ADVICE: Make sure you see a padlock on any website dealing with money or credit cards.

- - - - - USE SECURE websites for money transactions - the URL should start with https - the 's' means 'secure' with padlock icon

- - - - - GOOD EXAMPLE of a secure site: PayPal

- - - - - BAD EXAMPLE of non-secure site: the local Shopper's on-line ad payment form




- - - - - UNCHECK the box 'Open Safe Files after downloading' - go to Safari>Preferences>General

- - - - - BE WARY of a file ending in .exe - this file is not a Mac format and may launch an unwanted action.




BEST ADVICE : Don't use a word found in the dictionary for your password - and don't write it down


- - - - - Disable auto login at startup - do this in Accounts Pane of System Prefs

- - - - - Use auto logout after 30 minutes--- set this in Security Pane of Sys Prefs


10 Worst Passwords 2012

Tips To Create Strong Passwords - shows a handy formula for creating a great, memorable password

1 Password
will generate (and remember) a good password for you. Jerry highly recommends this application. It is available from Agile for $39.

- - - - - Note : One of the main tactics of hackers is to break into small, poorly guarded web businesses to steal passwords that might let them into more secure accounts elswhere, especially since people often use the same password for all accounts.

Here is an easy-to-do project on Mac - create a small, portable, secure disk image to store personal info, numbers, passwords safely locked up until you need them - read how.




Facebook Reveals Secrets You Haven't Shared - an increasing amount of personal information can be gleaned by computer programs that track how people use Facebook, according to extensive academic study

Social Engineering Scams to Steal Your Money - interesting article from Digilloyd

Shakespear Sonnets in Your DNA? (from NPR) - it all started with two men in a pub - Ewan Birney and Nick Goldman, both scientists from the European Bioinformatics Institute, who were drinking beer and discussing a problem: what is the best way to store DATA? (Full Article from EBI)


Thoughts Prompted by Google Reader's Demise - article by Adam Engst with some interesting thoughts about our world of information overload - a couple excerpts:

"It’s said that change is inevitable, and that we should get used to it. But I’d argue that’s not actually true — for most adults, life is more the same than different every day."

"While it’s increasingly impossible to avoid relying on cloud-based tools, anything out on the Internet can disappear without warning."




Talkatone - free app for free calling and texting without any cell minutes on iPhone, iPad or iPod to anyone with a phone number - you will need a free Google Voice number via a Gmail account - read FAQ - download here from iTunes App Store (thanks to Bob G)

Tango - free text, voice and video app - like Skype but many think it's better - download here from iTunes App Store (thanks to Bob S)

Graphic Converter - the 'Swiss Army Knife' of graphic design - try for free - buy for $39.95




AAXA M2 MicroProjector - $339 - Gene N. brought this dandy little micro projector to show our group - it fits on the palm of your hand, has an LED lamp good for 15,000 hours - image looked sharp up to 8 feet wide in our semi-dark room - read in-depth review of specs - (thanks, Gene)



Hammondsport Mac Users Group - Hammondsport, NY 14840 -