Articles 2020

Apple Advice and News

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February 2020

Macs and iCloud Hijacking
Ransomware, or viruses that hold your computer’s information for ransom, are far more common on Windows computers than Macs. However, there is a threat to a Mac that doesn’t require directly encrypting or stealing the computer’s files. iCloud hijacking is when someone reuses a password from a breached website to access iCloud and remotely lock a Mac computer or other Apple device. They then demand money for access to your device. To prevent this, we recommend using two-factor verification for Apple ID.

This makes it so your password and access to one of your devices is required to access you Apple ID.  For more information on two-factor verification or on Macs and ransomware, click on the links below:

Two-Factor Authorization Apple Support
Macworld on Macs and Ransomware

Are Using Password Banks a Good Idea?
Ultimately, the decision is up to you, for although any storage of passwords in the cloud is a security risk, the benefit of having secure and distinct passwords for all your accounts (that you don’t have to memorize) may outweigh the risk. Another benefit is not having to waste time with forgotten passwords.

If you do want to use a password bank, instead of a third-party solution, Apple iCloud Keychain is seamlessly integrated with Apple devices, including Safari and iOS/iPad apps. More information about using iCloud Keychain can be found in the following link:

Set up iCloud Keychain - Apple Support

If you need help with password management or other security concerns, don’t be afraid to ask.

Three Useful macOS Tips
  1. Instant calculator: “Command + Space” can bring up Spotlight, which can help quickly search for files and Applications. While incredibly useful for that alone, it can also be used to do quick currency conversions and basic math, but note it uses commas as decimal points.
  1. Instantly moving things to Trash: “Command + Delete” can instantly move a selected file to Trash, or if you’re a hundred percent sure you want the file gone for good, “Command + Option + Delete” can eliminate a file instantly without you having to empty Trash.
  1. Move open application in the background: If you select “Command” on an open application in the background, you can move it without it going into the foreground of your computer. This can be especially useful when referencing something from another window for whatever you’re working on.

We hope you found these tips and tricks useful.

November 2019

HIPAA Journal: "Patch and Update Computer Software or Face a HIPAA Sanction"
A reminder to all customers and people working in the medical field: failure to apply security patches is a violation of HIPAA. This applies to all technology storing or transmitting PHI. If no more patches are being issued on a piece of software or operating system you are using, according to HIPAA guidelines, "it must be upgraded or changed. Using outdated software is also a HIPAA violation.”

Unpatched software has already led one medical non-profit, Anchorage Community Mental Health Services to pay $150,000 in a settlement due to 2700 individuals having their data exposed. Though this case was settled in 2014, it remains relevant today as a reminder to be up to date on your software.

For more information, see the HIPAA Journal article in the link below:

https://www.hipaajournal.com/patch-update-computer-software-face-hipaa-sanction/

Be Careful of Fake Safari URLs

According to MacRumors, there is a new malware scheme where file types are disguised as safer files such as “.pdf” and “.doc” and automatically opened in Safari after download. Since Safari would think the files are safe, based on the file extension, the computer might download a “.zip” or some other file type and automatically introduce malware to the file system.

Luckily, this can be prevented. To prevent this, open Safari, open the Safari menu on the top of your screen, and go to Preferences, then click the General tab at the top.

Under this menu, you can uncheck “Open ‘safe’ files after downloading”. This will ensure you do not automatically open files after downloading them from Safari.
5 Useful Finder Tricks and Shortcuts
Copying or Moving Documents: In Finder, you can copy a document under Command C, and then paste the duplicate on your desktop or elsewhere in Finder with Command V.

Undo an action: You can use go to Edit: Undo or hit Command Z to undo an action in Finder. This could undo renaming a file, moving it to a folder, or even deleting a file (i.e. moving it to Trash) if done immediately after.

Put back: If you select and right click on a file in the Trash, you can click on “Put Back” and the file would be put back to its original spot. You can also do this once Trash is open by clicking on the “File” tab in the Apple toolbar on top of the screen and then scrolling down to “Put Back."

Creating a New Folder with Selected Documents: Once you select multiple documents using the Command key in Finder, under the “File” tab in the Apple toolbar on top of the screen, you can select “New Folder with Selection.”

Show path to document: With Finder open, under the “View” tab of the Apple toolbar, you can select “Show Path Bar” which will show all folders a selected document is in at the bottom of Finder.

 

 

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