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The VDH Virus Guide – Rogue AV: Windows Protection Unit

Using the internet can be littered with risks. Malware, phishing scams, viruses and a plethora of other nasties that can threaten your system and personal information. Most people know that some kind of protection is necessary – but what happens when a wolf in sheep’s clothing arrives offering just that?

(Image: Trojan Killer)

Rogue Antivirus is just that. It pretends to be helping, all the while infecting your computer with malware that can lead to serious damage. The Windows Protection Unit rogue AV masquerades as an antivirus program created by Microsoft to protect your system from malware. It will be presented in a pop up that will ask you to register and purchase the product. Don’t. 

Generally, a rule of thumb is that if something pops up asking you for payment details, avoid. Other ways to safeguard yourself from Rogue AV are:

  • Avoiding downloading software from torrent or peer-to-peer programs
  • Keeping your trusted antivirus update (Microsoft Security Essentials or AVG, for example)
  • Refraining from filling out random online surveys (answer this for a free iPad!)
  • Deleting your temporary files
  • Refraining from opening suspicious emails that have attachments

If you don’t take these necessary precautions, you could end up with a completely wrecked device. This virus will corrupt internet settings, .exe files and your .dll drivers file, rendering your computer useless. 

If you’ve fallen foul of the Windows Protection Unit Rogue AV and don’t feel up to the task of removing it, don’t panic. Call an expert and ask them to guide you through the process. 

Keep safe everyone!

Top Five from CES

Last week saw 3,100 companies descend on Las Vegas for the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012, one of the world’s most venerated expos for new tech, gadgets and other assorted electrical wizardry that set tech press tongues wagging and filled a million Christmas lists 12 months in advance. 

In total, over 20,000 products were showcased. We’ve been following the announcements closely, and have put together a quick roundup of what we think are the five coolest pieces of kit announced this year. 

Razer ‘Project Fiona’ Gaming Tablet 

 

 

(Image: Technabob)

This 10.1 inch Windows tablet is currently a prototype, however reports from CES seem to suggest that it’s not too far from completion. Essentially, Project Fiona is a tablet built to play games. The analogue controllers stuck to the edges solve a lot of the problems of tablet gaming, and while the specs are a closely guarded secret, it’s clearly capable of playing graphic rich games with ease. 

Question marks over battery life and upgrades aside, we’re very excited about Project Fiona’s fabulous tech and practical common sense. One to watch in 2012. 

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Our guide to uploading photos from your phone to computer

Many people now use their mobile phone as their camera too. If you have pictures on your phone, but aren’t sure how to upload them to your computer, look no further. Here is our easy step-by-step guide to uploading pictures from your mobile phone to a computer.

You may think “why would I need to upload photos to my computer when I have them all on my mobile?”  It is useful to transfer your pictures to your computer at regular intervals, otherwise your phone memory may become full. When the time comes for you to take a picture, you might not be able to do so, and nobody wants that to happen! Having too many photographs on your mobile may also unnecessarily slow it down. So when you upload pictures to your PC or Mac, you can clear your memory card on your mobile and have plenty of room to take many more pictures. This also gives you peace of mind, knowing that all of your pictures are saved in your computer, creating a backup if you ever lose or damage your phone. 

For iPhone users using a Mac 

Transferring photos from your iPhone to your computer is very much the same process to whether you have a PC or Mac.

To get started, you will need your iPhone, a USB cable (one should come with your phone) and a computer to plug it into. To transfer your images to Mac, plug your iPhone into your Mac, launch Preview, and from the file menu navigate down and select ‘import from iPhone.’ Select all,  or individually select the photos you want to transfer and click ‘import.’ Once these have been imported you can look at your photos by going to /Pictures/folder, and the pictures copied from Iphone should be there. You can then arrange into albums as you see fit!

For iPhone users using a PC

One of the first things to do after purchasing your iPhone is to register using iTunes. Once you have done that, your iphone will automatically be ‘synced’ with your PC. This means every time you sync, content is mirrored between your iPhone and computer to reflect new, updated or deleted content and in this case, photos. Make sure you have installed the latest version of iTunes so that everything is up to date. Open iTunes and connect your iPhone to a computer using the USB that came with your mobile when you bought it. Navigate to ‘apply’, in the lower right hand corner of the iTunes window to sync.  Once this is done, your photos should be saved, and you can browse them in your iTunes photo library.

For Android users

You need is a USB cable, computer and of course your mobile. Connect your mobile to your PC or Mac with the USB cable. You need to use the one that came with your mobile. You will see the ‘USB connected’ notification at top of computer screen. Click on this, then click on Mount. You can then transfer photos by just copying and pasting, and make your own folder and paste the photos into there. 

You can even download an app called Photo Transfer App which easily allows you to transfer photos to computer. 

For Blackberry users

Start by making sure BlackBerry Desktop Manager is installed on your PC. If it isn’t, you can download it from BlackBerry’s website. Next, connect your BlackBerry to your PC using the USB cable that came with your phone. BlackBerry Desktop Manager should launch automatically, but if not, click Start and select program from the list. Once software has launched, select Media Manager from the list of options. From the My Devices selection, click the Picture folder and then select the images you want to transfer to your PC. Now, either select My Media or the tab with a folder icon on it, and then drag these images into the window opposite. They will be now transferred to your PC.

Guide to Windows 7

Have you bought a Microsoft computer recently?  If so, it’s likely that your operating system is Windows 7. To help you get the best out of your PC, this week will are giving you an insight into some common features of the latest Windows operating system (OS). After the somewhat troubled Windows Vista, Windows 7 sought to mark a return to more favored operating systems like Windows 95 and Windows XP. 

Windows 7 has modified a number of the features from Windows Vista and repacked them to make them more user friendly.  Gadgets are now displayed as movable widgets on your desktop (small icons, which are easy to click on), and include things you’d regularly want to hand , for example calendar, weather and virtual post-it notes!

Tiling is another new addition for Windows 7, allowing you to ‘snap’ windows to the left and right of your screen. You’ll find this really handy when working on multiple documents or inserting web information into a spreadsheet as it allows you to access other documents you have open quickly and easily

Aside from the visual additions, there’s also a new ‘Backup and Restore Center’, which first made an appearance in Windows Vista, which automatically saves the contents of your hard drive on a scheduled basis, meaning you no longer have to worry quite so much if your computer crashes. 

Libraries are another useful aspect of Windows 7. They allow you to aggregate various files into one location, without changing the original location of the file. This is perfect if you have downloaded a lot of music or other content and want to be able to access them easily and quickly. 

Overall,  Windows 7 certainly seems to be a step in the right direction, and with Windows 8 just around the corner you can be sure that we’ll give you all the insider information when it comes out. 

Virgin Digital Help: Guide to Browsers

With news that Chrome has overtaken Firefox as the most popular browser in the US, here at Virgin Digital Help we thought it was time we gave you a run down to the selection of browsers available. Since the dawn of social media, combined with online shopping, internet usage has more than tripled.  Online population statistics website ‘Internet World Stats’ estimates that while in 2000 there were only 300 million internet users worldwide that this number is now estimated at more than 1000 million, an incredible growth in such a short space of time. 

 

Many computers come packaged with a browser pre-installed, depending on the operating system, be that Windows (Internet Explorer), Mac (Safari), Linux (Firefox) and there are also a number of other standalone browsers available, including Chrome and Opera. Each of these has a different specification, and may be more suited to you and your own personal needs when browsing the internet.  There are also differences in design, with some browsers sitting more obviously within your system, and others that blend in. Therefore, and without further ado, here’s a little glance at each. 

 

Internet Explorer (also known as IE) was born in 1995, and has seen many incarnations throughout the years, leading to the most recent version we know today, IE 10. Internet Explorer is simple to understand, and therefore would be perfect if you like your browsers complication free! It does however rank slightly lower on performance speed, but this is improving with each new iteration. 

 

If you would like your internet experience to be customised more easily, perhaps Firefox is the browser for you. Firefox has a specific site for add-ons, extensions and themes for your browser, which range from the fun to the practical. There are also options for sharing on social networking sites, something which has also seen a stratospheric rise in the last few years. 

 

On the other hand, if you like things to be clean and simple then either Safari or Chrome could have what you are looking for.  Both of these browser pride themselves on being as inobtrusive as possible, whilst still offering a good level of user experience - efficiency is key. Safari is the standard internet browser for Mac, and is similar to Internet Explorer with regard to pulling in features from its respective system. It is also contentiously the fastest option available today.  Chrome relies heavily on Google search as its primary search tool, and also gives you the ability to customise the browser with apps from the Chrome Web Store. 

 

Finally, the Opera browser is most popular in some European countries, and is currently the most popular mobile web browser for mobile phones. 

 

Whichever browser you choose, we hope our mini-guide helped.  It is important that you regularly update the version to the most recent - this will keep your computer safe against unwanted viruses and malware. One of the (many) advantages of keeping your browser up to date is that both Firefox and Chrome will store your settings and add-on details, meaning you’re safe if your laptop becomes unwell unexpectedly!! 

Autumn apps to keep you occupied

Although we hate to admit it, the nights are slowly drawing in. There are some benefits though - cold, dark and miserable evenings offer the perfect excuse to spend plenty of time guiltlessly snuggled up on the sofa, phone in hand, keeping yourself entertained with the latest in mobile fun! But what to choose? Fear not, as it’s time to count down our favourite apps of the month. This month our choices are certain to keep your spirits up and ensure the Autumn transition is as painless as possible. 

 BBC News Android

Take a look at the BBC News app, now available for the Android market as well. This smart app will keep you up to date with all the latest world news -  and its simple design means that using it is a dream.  This app is available for iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android. 

Calling movie buffs - this next app will have you searching for that obscure 80s B-list film late into the night. If you’ve used IMDB (Internet Movie Database) online, then this app puts its functionality into the palm of your hand. You can also search for film showing times on the move, perfect for those last minute decisions. IMDB is available for the iPad/iPhone, Android and Windows phone

Travel to work? Regular commuters will be all too aware of how boring these daily trips can be. Step forward Bubble Blast. In this puzzle game you have to pop multicoloured bubbles in order to set off a chain reaction. It’s not quite rocket science, but it’s suitably perplexing to make long journeys fun! Bubble Blast 2 is available for the Android only.