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6 computer and tech mistakes you should avoid

By Eric Geier (Our Founder & Owner)

Originally published by Cox Media Group on 8/12/19

To help protect yourself, your computers, and gadgets, here are some things to avoid: Falling for remote tech support scams: Keep in mind, a legit company will never call you unsolicited saying you have computer issues. But scammers will do this. They might call you out of the blue, or prompt you to call them via some alert or warning on your computer. They usually are pretty convincing and might even lie saying they are from Windows or Microsoft.

Please don’t fall for these scams. Don’t do anything they say. Instead hang up and contact a local computer professional like myself for advice.

Buying really cheap computers: Although the $200 to $300 new computers you might see look temping, I strongly discourage buying such a low-end computer. Just because they’re new, doesn’t mean they are faster than the computer you already have. The opposite can certainly be true since these lowend desktops and laptops usually have very slow processors and minimal memory. I typically suggest spending at least $500 on a new PC. If you’re wanting to spend less, consider getting a good used or refurbished PC from a company you trust.

Ignoring warning signs of trouble: If something doesn’t seem right with your computer — maybe you’re getting a bunch of pop-up ads or its running very slow at times — don’t ignore it. The issues might be caused by viruses, adware, or other malware, or due to pending hardware failure, all of which can get worse very quickly. I suggest calling a computer professional for advice if you feel something isn’t right.

Ignoring backups: Backing up files and documents is one of the biggest things computer users ignore. So, if you haven’t already, setup some type of backup. I suggest a cloud or online backup, so your files are safe from theft, fire, and other disasters in your home or office. If you aren’t comfortable with online backup, at least setup a backup to an external hard drive.

Neglecting your computer with lack of maintenance: It’s unfortunate that many people don’t think about getting professional computer help until there’s a major problem. Don’t neglect your computers and gadgets.

Similar to how you need to get check-ups done on your home HVAC system or even your own physicals, you should get at least yearly maintenance done on your computer.

We might be able to catch problems before they become bigger, and ensure you’re well protected from viruses and other malware. They can also ensure you’re backing up your files in case there’s ever a system crash.

Getting rid of your computers or gadgets without wiping them: Before you get rid of your computers, smartphones, tablets, and other electronics, I suggest wiping your data off, or giving it to someone you trust to do so.

As you may know, these gadgets can contain very sensitive information. In addition to your personal documents and photos, there might be saved passwords for websites and Wi-Fi networks that are easily recoverable.

Wherever your computer or gadget ends up, you don’t want strangers to get access to that information.

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