Tech Q&A: Protect your business against ransomware

Protect your business against ransomware

Q: With all the hacking and ransomware attacks, I would like to know how you make sure your business does not become a victim. I need to take steps now before it’s too late.

A: Getting virtually extorted is scary, but it’s especially terrifying when your business — along with its financial records and employees’ personal information — is at stake. Many businesses mistakenly assume they’re safe if they have a firewall and use security software. Those are important steps, but they’re not enough to protect your business anymore. If you really want to have peace of mind, you need to take extra precautions. For example, certain people at my company have two computers on their desk. Click here to learn how I set up my business to protect against ransomware.

Advertising to specific places

Q: My customers live in certain parts of town. How can I place ads online so only they see them?

A: Advertising to specific (physical) places is quite possible, and online marketing experts do it all the time. But like all marketing, “geo-targeting” is something you need to put a lot of work into planning, executing and refining. It’s one thing to set up a cheap thumbnail ad on Facebook; it’s quite another to build a customer base through rigorous online advertising. Click here to learn more about geo-fencing.

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Buying Apple products for less

Q: I would like to buy an iPhone, but they are so expensive. Is it okay to buy a used one on Craigslist?

A: The short answer is, “Maybe, but probably not.” There’s good news, though. If you’d like to buy a discounted Apple product, try looking for something “refurbished.” Apple does an incredible job of collecting retired devices and bringing them back from the dead. Not all used devices have been through this process, of course. Most used Apple products were just dropped off at a pawnshop so they could be resold. What you’re looking for is a device that is “certified refurbished” by Apple. So where can you find these discounted phones and tablets? Click here to learn more about refurbished Apple devices.

Stop Windows from sharing your Wi-Fi

Q: I read that Windows shares my Wi-Fi automatically with other people around me. How do I stop this?

A: If more people knew about “Wi-Fi Sense,” they’d probably be much more suspicious of Windows 10. After all, what kind of software is designed to automatically bypass your Wi-Fi password? Why would you want any passing stranger to log on to your network without you even knowing it? Wi-Fi Sense was designed to be a convenience, especially for people who routinely host friends and colleagues. You’ll be relieved to know that Wi-Fi Sense doesn’t share your actual password with anyone. But it’s still a liability for a lot of folks, so you should know how to switch it off. Click here to limit the reach of Wi-Fi Sense.

Keep your device safe outside

Q: With summer almost here, I often have to use my laptop, tablet and phone outdoors. Is this going to ruin them?

A: Very perceptive question. You would not believe how many people abuse their devices without even realizing. Phones, tablets and laptops have become so ubiquitous that we often forget that they are electronic machines, sensitive to temperature, humidity, dust and every other aspect of our environment. So yes, using your laptop outdoors might ruin it. Know the limits of its durability. Click here to learn one mistake that will kill your gadget.

What questions do you have? Call my national radio show and click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet or computer. From buying advice to digital life issues, click here for my free podcasts.

Copyright 2017, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved. Learn about all the latest technology on the Kim Komando Show, the nation's largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today's digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at