False message from Apple iTunes! BEWARE!

If you get an e-mail message supposedly from Apple asking you to confirm your iTunes ID and password, DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK! The link does NOT go to an Apple website. You WILL get something you never wanted, especially if you give away your Apple ID and password.

Apple - in fact, no reputable company - will ever ask you to verify your ID and/or password or any other personal or financial information by e-mail. If you need to make sure that your ID and password are good, go directly to the company's website and login. That will verify your ID and password.

Below is the exposed content of the phishing message. Notice that the link for "Verify now" goes to "lookslikedesign" and not Apple. Always hover over links to confirm their true identity.

We just need to verify that the information account belongs to you. Simply click the link below and sign in using your itunes ID and password. To complete the process, click the link below.
Verify now > <>
This link will expire three days after this email was sent.
Extend our this request, it's likely that another user has entered your email address by mistake and your account is still secure. If you believe an unauthorized person has accessed your account, you can enter your account information at My Apple ID <>.
Apple Support

My Apple ID <> | Support <> | Privacy Policy <>
Copyright Š 2015 Apple Inc. 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA 95014, United States. All Rights Reserved.

How to get your Mac hijacked

Yes, it is possible that your Mac could get hijacked. On August 17, 2015, PC World posted an article about how your Mac could get hijacked. PC World reports, "An Italian teenager has found two zero-day vulnerabilities in Apple’s OS X operating system that could be used to gain remote access to a computer."

The good news for Apple is that it doesn't appear to be in OS X El Capitan.

Is there a patch? Sort of, but it doesn't come from Apple. And because it takes two bugs together to cause the kind of memory corruption that would allow a hacker to gain root access, it's kind of unlikely that any Mac user would be affected. In other words, if you're not a high profile target, this should be the least of your worries.

Read the full PC World article here. And Cult of Mac has a similar article here.

Why Your Smartphone Records Everything You Say to It

        A friend sent this to us, and it deserves our attention.  The article starts out, "After controversy earlier this month over televisions recording owners and sending the clips to third parties, smartphone owners are now discovering that companies like Google, Apple and Microsoft are also recording voice commands and storing them for up to two years."  This article from the UK dated 2-25-15 also declares, ". . . and you agreed to it via the terms and conditions."
See   and notice the comments that are posted.  

Comparing PC & Apple

        "Here is an interesting article from PC World." states Jim Hamm.  He extrapolates, "Apparently this means that Apple might have an opportunity to move into the small business arena, which traditionally has been dominated by Windows. Apple, for whatever reason, has never been a factor in the business arena. 
        "As a side note, I was in a small business yesterday and the gentleman was accessing his computer. I asked what OS was he running? He said Windows XP, which was released 11 years ago! Our dentist, the VA, and so on, still use Windows XP. Microsoft is going to have a hard time moving these businesses to Windows 8."
        A statistic from that article catches our attention: In a survey of 45,000 PC World magazine readers the majority prefer Apple laptops. 

Apple's Six Best Decisions

        "Here's an interesting article and observation by Ted Landau of Apple's six best decisions — and why they make Apple the company it is today."  Jim Hamm goes on to elaborate,  "My only quibble with Ted is that the iPad should be included in the list. But he goes in detail explaining why he left this device out of his nominees. Possibly many of us — well, me, anyway — tend to think of Apple as a Mac, or computer, company. Not so much anymore. Here is a quote from the article: 'Apple’s success depended upon moving away from its focus on the Mac.' Hence, the dropping of 'computer' from the company name a while back."

Another Book on Apple

        Here's another book on Apple.  Jim Hamm passes along this info, "The following summary was provided by the Apple Blog Newsletter. This book, Inside Apple: How America's Most Admired — and Secretive — Company Really Works,  by Adam Lashinsky apparently focuses more on the inner workings of Apple, whereas the book by Isaacson focused more on Jobs, as was intended. I'm looking forward to reading it."

Found: 

Did everyone else already know this?  Jim Hamm sends us this tip:  "Give this a try:  Shift+Opt+K.  Not a 'biggie' tip, admittedly, but kinda neat.  Be the first in your neighborhood to sport this logo."  And Jim signs off with his trademark (grin).   I tried this on about a dozen different fonts, and every single one comes up the same. How fun is that!

Obsolete Software

        Heads up, here.  We all need to keep aware of obsolescence of computer programs we may have come to rely upon.  David Passell sends this article, and comments,  "Here's an article on companies abandoning old software or creating systems that won't run it.
        "This one kind of bashes Apple, but I am not sure which old programs I have that may need Rosetta. Here is one suggestion for anyone who expects to have compatibility problems with Lion. (As one article pointed our "Lion may be Apple's Vista.")
        1. Don't throw away that older Apple. If it has USB, Firewire, and Ethernet ports it can still be useful. Even more so if it can run old OS 9 programs.
        "For example: I have a very old blue-bubble iMac. I keep it because I have 'journaled' since 1993 or so and a lot of my files arepassword-protected Word Perfect. If I want to check something out in the past I can go to the time frame and open it up. Of course, if I unprotect the file, I can copy it to a USB drive and then open it with OpenOffice on the latest machine (assuming Lion runs OpenOffice). BUT I need the old program to open Password protected files."