You Don’t WannaCry… Do You?

You’d have to be living in a cocoon to have missed the reports in the mainstream media this week about the WannaCry Worm which has infected vulnerable computers around the world. WannaCry is transmitted when people open infected email attachments and can spread itself quickly within organisations over their internal computer networks. Home PCs and laptops are just as vulnerable!

What is WannaCry?

It’s a computer worm categorised as ransomware! When a PC (or laptop) is infected by WannaCry or any of its variants, important files are encrypted (scrambled) and can no longer be read or used. The primary target is your documents and pictures.

Once infected, you have to pay a ransom to gain access to your documents and pictures.

How do I recover from a WannaCry Infection?

If you want to recover (decrypt) your documents and pictures, you have to pay $US300 in Bitcoins to some ratbag. If you take more than 3 days, they double the charge to $US600 and after 6 days, they simply walk away leaving your PC information completely inaccessible.

If you don’t want to pay the money, you better have a (recent) backup of your documents, pictures, music and videos. You’ll likely need to reset your PC (reinstall Windows!) to remove the infection and then restore your documents, pictures, music and videos from the backup.

If you want to avoid having to choose a recovery method then read on… Continue reading

Ready to dump Internet Explorer if you are an XP user?

ie 6 7 8You already know that Microsoft is giving up support for Windows XP operating system from next month, but what you may not know is that if you are also using the IE [Internet Explorer] browser versions IE7 or IE8  on your XP system then you are likewise out of luck with any form of upkeep from Microsoft.

It should be mentioned that both IE7 and IE8 if used on Windows7 or 8 continue to receive fixes for the time being. But if you are an IE6 user – now also more than 12 years old – this version will be retired as from next month, so no more support.

Still determined to stick with XP? At least change browser to either Firefox or Chrome which continue to receive fixes for any bugs showing up.Firefox eats ie

It truly is surprising how many PC users still cling to XP, but understandable, however the Windows7 operating system has taken Chrome logoup the mantle from XP as reliable and well liked, and it is recommend that XP users change to the new W7 or W8 or even Windows 8.1 to get the most from their PC experience.

As always Kapiti SeniorNet Members know where to come for help if needed, so make the change, be safe, be happy.

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Why do I have to upgrade my trusted XP machine?

Windows XP PenguinBecause the time has come to say good bye to the good ole XP operating system and get into Windows 7 or 8 or 8.1.

Of course the suggestion is not a new one, at Kapiti SeniorNet the call went out quite a long time ago, and not just the once, but the situation is that all good things come to an end and that applies to software support also.

Come April this year there is no more support for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Exchange Server 2003, Small Business Server 2003 and Office 2003, so if you use any of these please take note.

All these products are now 11 years old [XP actually 13 years old but was given an extra life of 2 years], pretty good these days when things move pretty fast.

So why do you have to upgrade?

Continue reading