036: Protect your Instagram account: 2FA & Backup (Bonus Midweek Episode)

If you’re running a business on Instagram or Facebook do this now!
Hackers are targeting online influencers, holding accounts to ransom and deleting everything. To learn how to protect yourself watch this bonus midweek episode now.

Hey there YouTube! Someone I know had their Instagram hacked and held to ransom this week. This is an account she uses daily to build her business and communicate with her team. She never dealt with the hacker themselves, but they wiped her account of all of her posts and over 14,000 followers before she managed to regain control of her account. It’s been harrowing five days for her and a real scare for a bunch of people around her, so I wanted to share a couple of very quick and simple things you can do to protect your accounts online.

First though, a word of warning. Instagram and Facebook (and Twitter and
YouTube etc.) are all free platforms that allow you to share your info with the world on their platform. For free. You’re only paying if you choose to run ads (or sponsored posts or whatever they’re called) on that platform. Free. That’s their business model and it also means they have to keep their support costs relatively low, which means they automate everything they can and everything else goes into a queue and takes time to be dealt with. This sucks but it’s the price you pay for playing in their sandbox.

Enough said.

What can we do to best protect ourselves? Two things: Two-Factor Authentication and Backup. What is Two-Factor Authentication? The first factor in authentication that everyone is used to, is your password. This is something you KNOW. Adding a second factor adds something you HAVE. In this case your phone. The system will either send you a text or pop up in a dedicated app with an authentication code that you need to type in as part of your login. So even if someone were able to guess your password, they would still need access to your text messages to be able to log into your account.

Here let me show you.

It’s a little off topic but I have to say that this post that appeared in my Insta feed as I was recording this was timely. Gary Vee discussing what would happen if Instagram just disappeared like MySpace did? But I digressā€¦

In your Instagram, click on the head and shoulders icon to go to the profile page, then click on the settings cog. From the menu select Privacy and Security. Scroll down to two-factor authentication and click Edit two-factor authentication settings. Assuming the phone number is correct, tick the box to turn on text messages, and turn it on, then click Next. You will get a message on your phone that looks like this.

Enter the code and click done. You’ll be given a series of backup codes, take a screenshot and store them somewhere safe. Now you’re safe. Anytime you log into Instagram it will take a few extra moments to receive that text message and enter in the code but you’ll be safe and that’s worth it.

The second part is Backup. Further down the Privacy and Security screen is the option to request a data download. Inside is a link to create a download package of your account. This can take some time, especially if you have a lot of posts, but, eventually they will email you a link to download your backup file. This file contains all of your photos, videos & profile information.

Now, there’s no clear way to upload that back to Instagram but at least you have the information, you know what you posted and you have a record of it.

I hope that helps. Please spread the word. Share this to your network, people need to know before someone else ends up like my friend.

At The Tech Doctor Network, our goal is to help negotiate the technology maze. Come back every weekend for new videos or subscribe and ring the bell to be notified.

I’m here to help. Thank you so much for watching. Have a great day!

035: Back to School Computer Tips

Hey there YouTube! Did you know that today, January the 19th is National
Popcorn Day in the US? How about that! Why not pop a bag of your favourite, sit back and watch our 2019 back-to-school edition.

As it’s nearly time for school to start I thought I’d do a quick overview in this video of some of the technology used at various schools I know.

Some schools provide each student with a computer, which looks great because they’re all the same, parts are the same, everything’s the same, but it costs a lot of money.

Many schools have a closed BYOD system (Bring-Your-Own-Device) where parents are given a range of options at different price points with various accessories. This is a great middle ground and helps people at various income levels.

Other schools have an open BYOD where you can bring whatever device you like and they may or may not offer any for sale through the school or its supplier. This makes management really difficult at the school but it does mean if you already have a device you can bring it along and the school will do the best they can to make it work for you. Hopefully. Eventually.

If you don’t have a choice, then welcome to your new device, whatever it is. If you do have a choice I want to give you a few ideas that might make the decision easier for you.

The first point is durability. Kids are, well, kids. Some are more careful than others, most are not very careful. A few extra dollars spent upfront may mean a lot of money saved and a lot less time in for repairs. Cheap consumer grade computers and tablets are just that, cheap. They’re built to a price point, not a level of quality.

I’m not going to recommend specific models or anything here because
this video would be out of date before I even get a chance to upload it. Suffice to say that Lenovo makes tough computers, as do Apple (to a lesser extent, aesthetics can trump function in that case). Dell and HP tend to have good models and cheaper models, as do some of the smaller manufacturers.

Cheap junk is cheap junk. As an indication, grab the sides and give it a bit of a twist. If it flexes, be wary. This Lenovo is tough and doesn’t
budge at all, ditto this MacBook Pro. This Acer has a bit of flex but it’s still pretty solid because it’s a metal case. This HP is pretty bottom of the range, consumer stuff and this Laser tablet I feel like I could actually snap it in half with my hands.

As far as software maintenance goes, if you have access to them, Chromebooks are awesome. There are some things you can’t do on a Chromebook, but that’s often a good thing especially for keeping kids on track.

Macs are really reliable software wise, as are all the tablets. Windows computers can have a few issues, though they are also the most general purpose of machines.

Touchscreens:
I’m not really a big fan of touchscreens on the laptop, especially for kids. It’s just one more thing to go wrong and make screens even more expensive to replace. I almost never see anyone with a touchscreen laptop using the touch features on it. The reverse is not necessarily true though, keyboards for iPads and Android tablets do get a bit of use, especially if you have to input a bunch of text. Typing on the screen just isn’t that much fun.

Speaking of tablets, put them in a case. Not a slip in storage case but an
always-on plastic or rubber case ideally with a cover or decent bumper at the front to protect the screen. Screen protectors, especially the glass ones are great too. Make sure all the phones have a case – ideally a flip one that covers the front.

Laptop cases and backpacks:
Either a slim neoprene case that goes on the laptop and then in the school bag or a dedicated backpack with a laptop storage compartment.

Also on the topic of protection like this, I recommend you never put a device flat on the ground. Not to charge it, to put it aside while you get off the floor, never! Stand it up, either lean it against the wall or stand it slightly open on a edge like this.

A decent laptop should survive falling its own length but very few survive any sort of decent impact on the top of the screen.

I hope that was helpful for you. If you have any popcorn left there’s some more of my videos here for you to watch.

At The Tech Doctor Network our goal is to help you navigate the technology maze. Come back every weekend for new videos or subscribe and hit the notify bell to receive notifications when there’s new ones out.

I’m here to help. Thank you so much for watching. Have a great day!

034: Applying Marie Kondo’s (KonMari) method to tidying up your computer.

Hey there YouTube, welcome back. This week’s episode centers around applying Marie Kondo’s Konmari method of tidying up to your computer. Of course, I could be considered a complete hypocrite by posting this especially if you were to have a quick look at the desk to my left. šŸ™

For those that don’t know, Marie Kondo is a tidying guru who penned a book back in 2015 called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying up, The Japanese art of decluttering and organizing. It’s a New York Times #1 best-selling book and also earned her a spot in The Times top 100 most influential people of 2015.

2019 has seen a resurgence of her work as Netflix released an 8 part series called tidying up with Marie Kondo on January 1st. I bought the book on Audible in 2017 and enjoyed both the reading and the application.

The basic premise is that we group various things in our lives and keep love and treat well those which bring us joy and thank and let go of those that do not. I won’t go any further into the detail, I encourage you to find someone with Netflix and sit and watch it with them.

I wasn’t able to find anything specific on the konmari.com website about cleaning up your computer, nor have I ever seen Marie use one, so I thought I’d take the premise and make my own.

“Sparking Joy” can be a difficult concept especially with digital stuff, so I’ve broken the concept into a couple of parts. The first is programs. What programs do you have and like using on your computer? Which ones are there because you tried them once and found they weren’t for you? Let’s
head into the Start menu, click settings and apps and you’ll be at the “Apps and Features menu” take a look through this list. Mine is pretty basic as this is my demo machine but even here I was able to find a few programs installed as part of Windows that I didn’t want.

Uninstalling is as simple as clicking on the program name and clicking “Uninstall”. For Windows Store apps that will simply uninstall in place, other programs will take you through an uninstaller that is basically
exactly the same as the Installer you used when you installed it. Take a moment to think about each item in the list if you use it, great. If you don’t know what it is, maybe just leave it, there are a few things installed with Windows that you generally don’t want to get rid of.

For example the Dolby Access app here. This is part of the sound card for this machine and things might not work properly if you remove it. If you aren’t sure, post a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you out.

Another option is to google the name of the program and “Windows 10” and see what comes up. For example, we googled “Windows 10 app Dolby Access” and found this, which was enough to convince us that it was
worth leaving in place. If it’s a program you tried and didn’t use again, or haven’t used in ages, it’s probably worth uninstalling. Say thank you and click uninstall. Worst case, if you have to use it again, you can just download and install it again and know that when you do, you’ll definitely have the latest version, not one that is a year or two old.

On a Mac, removing a program is as
simple as dragging its icon from the Applications folder to the trash.
Remember to say thank you.

Part two is cleaning up your files. The best place to start this is usually the desktop. The desktop is not a place to store your files! You will get to a place where there are so many files on the desktop that you

a) can’t find anything and

b) your computer slows down just redrawing icons.

Create some folders inside of Documents, Pictures and Videos folders
and store everything away. Some people sort by topic, others by time. I’m not really into sorting by time unless it’s photos. If you have a document like a resume or a packing list, it doesn’t really matter when it’s from, it just
matters that you can find it and it’s the current one. It doesn’t make much sense to have a 2010 resume, a 2012 version, a 2015 resume and a 2019Ā version all in separate folders.

Whatever method you use, don’t be afraid to throw out files if you’ll never use them again. That no junk mail sign that you printed in 2007 isn’t really likely to be used again and won’t take more than 5 minutes to recreate unless it was a real work of art, in which case, by all means, keep it.if it sparks joy.

If you need help creating folders or moving files, Episode 14, should help you out.

I hope that was helpful for you. At The Tech Doctor Network our goal is to help you negotiate the technology maze.

Come back every weekend for new videos, or subscribe and ring the
bell to be notified.

I’m here to help. Thank you so much for watching. Have a great day!

033: Vicroads MyLearners App for Learner Drivers in Victoria (L-Plates)

Hey there YouTube! Today I’ve got something slightly different for you.I’m actually reviewing and talking you through the MyLearner’s app from VicRoads.

This app is a new release from VicRoads from December 2018, so it’s less than a month old, which allows you to replace the paper log book for your learner’s.

A bit of history: here in Victoria, Australia you have to have 120 hours of supervised driving on your learner’s and I believe 20 of those have to be nighttime driving hours.

Those hours have to be supervised by fully licensed driver in the passenger seat and previously you had to fill out a paper logbook with all of those hours and each Drive and it’s a slightly painful process!!

Well, VicRoads have now released an app that allows both the learner and the supervisor to have that app, possibly even on the same device (both Android and iOS) on their phone and it actually tracks the drive fully GPS tracked so that there’s no ifs, buts or maybes about whether the drive was done and then at the end of a drive that information is sent back to the supervisor who approves it and it’s recorded as a log. That way there’s no risk of losing the logbook or any of that sort of thing.

The app is called MyLearners. As you can see this is the iOS version. When you install it, at first you have to either log in or sign up. It does require a Vic Roads login, that allows them to authenticate you as a registered, licensed driver. You have to put in your license number and that sort of thing.

A few people have said in the reviews have said there have been some problems with that. I didn’t have a problem but I’m fairly tech savvy that’s why I’m here :), and I will step you through the process in just a sec.

Now I will note that there are some people in the reviews that have said (you’ll see it’s only got a review of 2.9 stars) that they are having trouble with the app crashing, not recording drives that sort of thing. It is brand new, I’m sure it will improve over time. We haven’t had any problems, but we’ve only done 32 minutes of driving so far so we will see.

From here I hit the sign up button, and it took me through to the VicRoads website to sign up for a My VicRoads account. It’s four steps through the process. The first one “Do have a Vic Roads account?” I selected “No”. It says “Do you have a Victorian driver’s license.” “Yes”. I then had to put my driver’s license number in and my address it then verifies my Name, Phone number, email address and a password so that I could log in. Then step three confirms all the details. (I can’t show them here) You have to go through and create all the security questions and answers, the usual sort of thing for an account of this type. The fourth step, it sends you an email so that you activate the account.

That’s the notification you get, that’s the email as it was inthe inbox on my iPhone. I simply click the “activate your account” button, it took me back through, said my account was activated and back in the app it showed me that, I have no drives to verify, I’m not coaching any learners and there’s been zero drives in the past 7 days, which makes sense.

Now, I’ll show you the learners version of this soon but for me, Beccy sent me an invite to say “Will you be a supervising driver for me?” and so I have, in my invites tab, in the learners section, a request from Beccy which I accepted and now she is a learner on my account. It now says I have one learner that I coach with zero drives.

It also has a bunch of tips and tricks that it shows. So, stage one tasks to practice with your learner, practice moving away from the curb, steering, braking smoothly and then I can click the arrow and there’s four or five different tips that it gives. They’re really handy.

Beccy has done a pre-learner’s driving course, so she’s already got about three and a half hours of experience, even before she got her learner’s. It was all done on private roads so it’s not out in traffic or anything like that.

When the learner logs in, this is what they see. Now this is my Rebecca, Beccy as we know her. It was her 16th birthday yesterday and she got her Learner’s Permit at 10 o’clock in the morning so she’s (at the time of this) done 22 minutes of driving. She then went to the supervisor’s tab, hit the plus button up in the top right corner and invited me to be a supervising driver for her, which is the thing that I accepted in the earlier visual.

This is where she is at now, and then when she clicks on the stopwatch down in the bottom middle, it asks her to start a drive. But she needs to select a supervisor first, so she clicks on that. She can choose from either Bernie or myself, she clicked on me, it now says I’m the supervising supervisor for this drive. Click “Start Drive” It then says to “put the phone away. It’s against the law to use your phone while driving” so we simply tap the ok button, and put the phone out of harm’s way.

We don’t necessarily hide it, like putting it down under the seat, is possibly not a good idea because it may interfere with GPS. Some of the people that have been having problems, I wonder if it’s possibly a problem with the GPS on the phone not being able to see the satellites at all.

So off we went on our drive. At the end of the drive, you hit the stop button and it shows the details. I was the supervisor, there were nine minutes of daylight driving, (this was after dropping a friend home from the station) and Beccy had to go through and select the traffic conditions, the weather conditions, types of roads, driving environment and then submit.

Once that’s submitted, it also gives you a little hint, “Basic car control in quiet areas first” This is great for first starting drivers.

Then on her phone it pops up that she has an unverified drive and she has two approved drives.

At this point on my notifications, I then got a notification that there was a drive that I had to approve, so I opened my phone. It shows this drive at 10:05 a.m. as an unverified drive. I tap on that and it says I can either reject or approve that particular Drive. I click the approve button. It’s now an approved drive and back on Beccy’s phone she now gets a notification that says the trip was approved and a comment. “Great work, you need to (supposed to say) relax on the speed changes” and gives the details there.

Beccy now has 31 minutes of daytime driving and a little hint about “are you ready” and then a summary down the bottom of the different types and times of driving that she’s done.

I personally think this is a wonderful app. There is a sort of conflict I guess between having a phone with you while you drive and that being a possible distraction but if it’s managed properly that shouldn’t be a problem. I really like it, kudos to VicRoads for trying something. I think you’ve got done a pretty good job of it. I can’t think of anything I would really change.

I’d love some feedback: if you hate it, love it, whatever! Again, this is the January 2019 version, hopefully, it will improve over time as they think of other things. Again, I’ve done one 9 minute drive using it. My wife’s done 22 minutes so we haven’t had any problems in that 31 minutes of driving. Nor either of us as a supervisor but we will see.

Anyway, thank you so much for watching.

Here at The Tech Doctor we release a video every weekend helping you feel comfortable with your computer and navigating the maze of technology. Hit the subscribe button below if you want to subscribe and ring the bell to be notified of new episodes.

Thank you so much for watching and have a great day!

032: Other Backup options: Dropbox

Hey there YouTube! Another Christmas has come and gone and here we sit in the in-between. That lovely holiday time between Christmas and New Year. Time to enjoy the holidays for most people and plan the New Year’s party and resolutions we make for the year ahead.

But, 2019 isn’t quite here yet, so I thought I’d continue on with the backup theme of the last couple of weeks and introduce you to Dropbox as well.

Why introduce Dropbox when I’ve said I prefer Google Drive? Well, because a lot of people do use Dropbox and it’s quite common for people to share files using Dropbox, so it’s worth knowing how it works.

Failing that, if someone asks, at least you know this episode is here and you
can brush up your skills when you do need them.

Other reasons to like Dropbox include space. Lots of space. They have much larger storage options than Google, starting with 1Tb or a 1000Gb for around AU$150 per year.

Another is excellent multi-way sync. You can connect multiple
computers to a Dropbox account and a file added on one computer will begin to download on your other computers as soon as it’s finished uploading.

To get started with Dropbox, you need to sign up on their home page at Dropbox.com you can even sign in using your Google Account, which is handy because it’s one less password you need to remember. All you have to do is sign into the pop-up with your Google account and allow the Dropbox integration with Google. Then you put in your name and agree to the Dropbox Terms of Service.

The next screen gives you a tour of Dropbox but what we want is the download button behind it, which takes you to the download page where you can download the stub. Once you click this, the mini installer downloads. When you run it, it goes through and downloads the full installer and installs itself into windows. At the end of the install, click “open my Dropbox” and the Dropbox for Windows tool will start.

One of the differences between Dropbox and Google Drive is that Dropbox simply sets up its own folder and anything you put into that folder is synced to Dropbox. It does not backup your existing Documents, Pictures etc like Google Drive does.

At the next screen we selected Dropbox Basic and were rewarded with the message that our computer was now linked to Dropbox. Like Google Drive, the system tray icon gives us access to the Notifications and the Preferences Window.

The Preferences Window has several panels: dealing with your account, the
ability to import any photos from USB drives and memory cards you insert,
bandwidth limitations, proxies, notification settings and the sync options.

I particularly like the selective sync option as it gives you the ability to have a folder sync to your Dropbox and then turn it off on your computer to remove the files from that computer but still have it available in Dropbox and on any other computers that are synced. This is particularly handy if you have a device like a laptop with limited amount of storage space. The files are always available, if you need them, you just have to add them back in to that device’s selective sync and It will download and then untick them when you’re finished to make them disappear from your local storage.

The other great feature is sharing: you can right-click on any file or folder in your Dropbox and select from a variety of dropbox options, including the “share” and “copy Dropbox link”. Clicking “share” will give you a box where you can add someone to share this document with you. If they don’t have a Dropbox account, or don’t have one with this email address, they’ll be asked to create an account with this email before accessing the file.

The second option in the Dropbox section of the drop-down is “copy Dropbox link” which will give you a link that you can simply email to anyone to access and download that file.

I think that’s about enough for now. At The Tech Doctor Network our goal is to help you negotiate the technology maze. Come back every weekend for new videos or subscribe and ring the bell to be notified. I’m here to help. Thank you so much for watching. Have a safe and Happy New Year! Bye!