My professional status, financial standing and personal acquaintances are all about to improve.
I received in an email that I was chosen as a professional candidate to represent my community in the new 2013 Edition Worldwide Who’s Who.
This must be my lucky week. I also got notified someone is willing to share a part of their foreign inheritance if I am willing to provide banking assistance.
On top of this, I have been contacted by some European women who are looking for someone to correspond with. I am at a loss to rationalize why I am the recipient of this trifecta of good karma.
I received a telephone call from a technical support organization telling me my computer was causing problems on the Internet and they would like to assist me in troubleshooting the issue. After thirty years in the technology industry solving problems, many with computers, I was looking forward to the help. I went to my computer and took notes on what they wanted me to do.
Their first step was to show me the issues with my computer. Using a command to run a native Microsoft Windows command (msconfig) they pointed out all the programs that were stopped because of the problem. The support person indicated over twenty, (which my computer had) as being not in good condition. Some of the programs listed are stopped normally without having a problem. This was not mentioned.
I was then asked to access a web site by running a command (iexplore www.pccare.us.com/chat.html) and select the run button so they could do further testing to isolate the problem. Users running programs accessed from the Internet is one way to create problems with your computer.
At that point with some subterfuge, I told they should call back at a later date so my son could help. They didn’t call back and I don’t have a son. I was hoping to track them further by establishing a computer I could use to run the program.
I don’t recommend you interact with any unsolicited person that requires information or has requested access to your computer. Mine was an exercise in a control environment. I just wish I could have played out the ending.
Computers have become a soft copy focal point for many of the items in our lives that were once hard copy. Think of your computer (tablets included) and list the tasks you perform using the device. I suspect the list has a few items and will continue to grow as technology changes.
Rarely do we mail letters because email or SMS messaging is much more efficient.
Completing your income tax returns doesn’t require a calculator. Filing them with Revenue Canada doesn’t require an envelop. That is if you have the program to perform the task more conveniently.
Physically visiting a financial institution to perform banking tasks is not required when the services are offered online. Paying bills, price shopping items or purchasing goods are all Internet available.
Even the time consuming, once enriching task of finding a partner to share life with, is just key strokes away. Searching a database of online mates provide the flexibility to narrow down the field to those you feel meet the grade, with minimum investment. Now you can start the easy part of dating.
I don’t know what would have happened if I completed the exercise the technical support person asked me to. I no it was extremely important to the technician because he elevated my call to the supervisor, who assured me there would not be an issue. Given ample warning I would have prepared a computer that I could have compromised to determine the outcome.
I do know computers contain information about me. I do know I want to control where that information is. I want to know who wants the information and how is it going to be used.
It is my experience people don’t ask those questions or don’t understand the implications of the answers.
I have often thought it would be a great learning opportunity for a high school student to experience identity theft. Similar to the program where students have to take care of a doll that mirrors the needs of a real baby, to show teens what parenting is really like. Maybe a day of not being able to use all the things that depend on your identity, would show teens the importance of information. They might even pass the information on to their family.
I suspect the organization that was using a phone call to access my computer wasn’t targeting a teen. They were just after any person that would give them access to the central repository of information. Today that is a computer.
I understand that technology can be a key to heaven and hell. As told to Richard Feynman by a Buddhist monk “To every man is given the key to the gates of heaven; the same key opens the gates of hell.”