Author Archives: Keith

Shock news about Coronavirus and onions

This article first appeared in the Heacham Newsletter: Firstly this month, an apology. Last month’s article looked at newspapers and how news can often be ‘spun’ to present a particular point of view. It contained a number of footnotes with the sources for the facts and figures, so that readers could check them for themselves. […]

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I read the news today. Oh boy.

Many years ago, in a different world in a different time, I owned a newsagents’. It’s a trade I love (I still tidy the magazine racks when I visit W H Smith) but that these days seems to sadly be becoming something of an anachronism, as more and more people seek their news online or, […]

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Lessons from Lockdown, Part Two

As I write this, lockdown is easing, visitors have arrived in droves, and there is a sense of greater freedom for some. Others, though, are still wary – and who knows what will have happened by the time this is published! So the oapc guide to home-based activities continues… TV and streaming With most of […]

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Lessons from lockdown

Back in February, a lifetime ago, I was trying to convince one of my customers of the benefits of internet banking. She wasn’t convinced: she and her friends preferred having cheques that they could post to each other to pay for their charity group’s activities. Last month, I thought of her as I was scratching […]

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It could be you! But it probably isn’t.

Last month we looked at a few real email messages and unpicked some of the technical clues to watch out for: • who sent the message? • if I click the thing they want me to click, where will it take me? But there’s often an easier way to spot a wrong ’un and that’s […]

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Save money – Have the Kenyan Road Minister pay your TV Licence!

Last month, we looked some of the basic information you need to help unravel whether a website is legitimate or not. I thought this month I’d share a few emails I’ve received, with some tips on how to spot the dodgy ones. Although old-fashioned viruses still exist, the majority of threats to your computer, phone […]

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How to spot a fraud

On moving to Heacham, I gave up my previous career as an international counter-intelligence operative, working out of a smoke-filled basement somewhere in Westminster. Hello, I’m calling from BT. We’ve noticed some unusual activity on your line and we’d like to help you resolve the issue now. Which of those two paragraphs do you think […]

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Passwords and security (part three)

I’ve got nothing against country dancing. Over the past couple of months, I looked at why it’s important to use a different password on every website and why a long one is better than a short one. I’ve also mentioned the importance of keeping contact information up to date, to make it easier to reset […]

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Passwords and Security Part 2

Last month, we looked at why it’s important to use a different password on every website and your homework was to sort out all those post-its and get your existing passwords organised in an address book – A for Amazon, G for Gmail but not everything under C for Computer… So let’s look at what […]

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Good News!

Researchers have discovered the biggest security threat to your online activities. Bad news: it’s you. When they think about ‘hackers’, most people imagine Igor in Russia, banging away at his keyboard and trying to guess what their password might be. The reality is very different. When you first sign up to a website, you’re asked […]

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