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iCal upgrade, Epsilon email breach, Facebook

MobileMe iCal upgrade

On May 5, 2011, MobileMe will transition to their new Calendar service. If you sync iCal calendars between devices, like two or more computers, iPods, iPads and such, and you wish to continue accessing your calendar at <me.com>, you will have to upgrade your calendars at <me.com>. Apple says all you have to do is log into <me.com/calendar>, using your MobileMe login and password. It is best to make sure your calendar is up to date, as in you have made sure to manually sync it with the MobileMe prefpane in System Preferences or the MobileMe sync widget up in the menu bar near the clock. Also, do whatever you normally do to back up your calendar data. It would be good to make sure that your other devices that also sync calendars via MobileMe are turned off or at least not syncing.

Finally, back on the <me.com/calendar> web page, click on the Upgrade Now icon in the lower left corner. Wait, and wait, and wait even longer. Don’t close the web browser window if you want any chance of watching the progress. When it is done, double-check your calendar(s) and if all is OK, turn back on syncing on your other devices.

Oh, and Apple wants you all to be using Snow Leopard, 10.6.4 at least. See more info at <http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4037>

Epsilon email list breach

Worthy of an April Fools joke, on April 1st, Epsilon, out of Texas, admitted an “unauthorized entry into Epsilon’s email system” on March 30, and that the “information that was obtained was limited to email addresses and/or customer names only.” What does Epsilon do? They handle email campaigns for many large corporations and they have not said who. However, large banks, like JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, U.S. Bank, Barclays Bank and Capital One, and other corporations like Krogers, Home Shopping Network, the College Board, Best Buy, Home Depot, and. Time to learn about “spear phishing”, when email or other contact makes us of trust we have in an institution contacting us by email, phone or in person, while relying on appearing to be something we trust. Now, we have to pay more attention to scam messages with targeted messages trying to trick us into changing login information via a fake page, giving up other information that might give them access to other online accounts. or get us to buy fake or unneeded services and products. .  So, if asked via email for your account number, UserID, PIN or password, don’t reply. Call instead to verify.

Facebook

If you were to see “My Facebook wall has been viewed X times.” coming from a Facebook friend, should you just click on the link to see if you can find out the same information for your Facebook page? Well, the result is likely to be that you end up giving a third party application access to be able to post messages using your Facebook account name. Facebook is a major conduit for spamming and phishing messages, trying to make use of our trust in what appear to be legitimate messages from our friends. However, nothing in the way that email is structured currently can assure you that the sender of a message is really who he/she says. Facebook is not really good at shutting down scammers, so you have to pay more attention. And, while you are at it, you might want to use a different browser for your Facebooking, doing your regular browsing with your normal web browser. If you don’t log out of Facebook and just continue browsing, then all of those websites with a Facebook Like button are letting Facebook know what sites and pages you are looking, even if you don’t click the Like button.

And, by the way, spend a little time learning the Facebook privacy settings at http://www.facebook.com/privacy/explanation.php