July 20, 2020 |

Online Financial Abuse

Here is an excerpt from an article published 20/7/2020 on Financial Abuse:


Most of us move money around online, say if we owe a mate some cash or to pay a bill. When you do, you usually have to write a description of what the transaction is that goes onto the statement of the person receiving the money.

I might write ‘love mum’ if I’m sending something to my children, but these people will send abusive messages,” said Ms Fitzpatrick (General Manager, Customer Vulnerability, CBA).

We were horrified by both the scale and the nature of what we found.

In a three-month period, we identified more than 8000 CBA customers who received multiple low-value deposits, often less than $1, with potentially abusive messages in the transaction description – in effect using them as a messaging service.“I’ve seen 900 messages over a two-hour period saying things like ‘I want to kill you’. They’re blocked on Facebook so they’re using the app to send intimidating and harassing messages for one cent each,” she said.

CBA said this form of abuse was more prevalent among younger people.Aside from the pain of receiving the message itself, some victims may, for example, need to rent a house and be forced to show a letting agency their bank statements meaning a complete stranger will see the messages.

Its technology assisted abuse and it can be a precursor to financial abuse,” Ms Fitzpatrick said.

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April 20, 2020 |

USB Safety

USB SafetyUSB2

The USB (full name universal serial bus) otherwise known as a flash drive, data-stick or thumb drive is a portable device used for saving files. What would you do if you found a USB lying around on a desk, left behind at an Internet café or lying on the ground? If you are like most people then chances are you would probably be curious and plug it into your PC or laptop (particularly if it had a tantalising label like “confidential” or marked as being a high capacity storage item).

While a lone USB may well have been accidentally left behind by someone, there is a very real possibility it was deliberately planted by a hacker who is banking on human curiosity to help them infect your device. Sadly, these enticements are also aimed at children, when USBs decorated with say a unicorn or in the shape of a robot or a popular cartoon character are left lying around to deliberately entice a younger demographic who may not immediately think about safety before picking up the “free” USB.

While this does sound sinister, it is an easy way for hackers to access your computer – and with your help!  There are two ways the USB can achieve this, the first is by placing infected files on the USB so when you click the file it puts a virus on your computer (yes you could run a virus scan on the drive before you open it, but even then that isn’t something I would recommend – the best thing would be not to plug it in at all).

The second way is for the hacker to actually program the USB software, making it more efficient and dangerous. When this is done the USB device will automatically upload malware onto any device it’s plugged into, even before you open it, so the moment you plug the device in you are unfortunately at risk. Without wishing to scare people, an infected USB can do lots of damage aside from downloading a virus, including actions such as:

  • Taking over your keyboard and entering predetermined keystrokes, forcing your PC to perform actions you did not select
  • Logging your keystrokes and sending the data to remote servers (that is how they can copy your passwords for banking, etc)
  • Taking over your webcam and recording you
  • Changing or manipulating your files
  • Permanently destroying your device.

So, as you can see, a free USB device is definitely not worth the trouble!!

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March 31, 2020 |

How to quickly close all tabs in Safari on your iPhone

It’s easy to end with heaps of open windows from websites you have visited, so rather than going to each webpage and closing it using the time-honoured method of clicking the “x” in the top right corner of the page, try closing them all in one click!

1. Open Safari on your iPhone.
2. Hold your finger down on the Tabs icon (two squares bottom right and circled in the diagram).
3. When the prompt opens choose Close All Tabs (the number of  open tabs are listed) or choose Close this Tab if you are only closing the one you are viewing.
Otherwise (and I just discovered this..) if you are looking at your list of open windows just hold down your finger on the Done button (bottom right) and you will also close all open tabs!

Ah technology!! 😍.Safari close_LI

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January 10, 2020 |

Why you should always use 2020 when writing important documents


Someone mentioned this to me recently – apologies as to who – yell out it if was you!.

It’s very important to be careful when writing the dates on cheques or other important documents in 2020 (e.g a will, Power of Attorney, etc) to write it in the full format.

This is because anyone who is slightly mischievous can take advance of this and change the date very, very easily – for example:

If I date something important as 8/2/20, somebody who wants to backdate can easily do so by making it 8/2/2019 or 8/2/2000 – you get the picture. While I agree it is sad that people will go to those lengths, it can easily be done. Even by family members we might trust…


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July 31, 2018 |

What is a Technology Roadmap?

When businesses are planning how they will implement new technology, particularly larger programs of work that will take a number of years, they will generally go through the process of creating a Technology Roadmap. A Technology Roadmap is much like a traditional map in that it shows you where you are heading. But instead of showing you the road or streets to follow, it is a document outlining how to reach short-term and long-term goals through the use of technology solutions.

The creation of a Technology Roadmap is  a key tool in helping a business visualise their future through the effective use of technology.  This work is lead by experts from the organisation’s Technology team, (generally the Architecture and Strategy team or similar) who always work in in consultation with the overall business – by activities such as by holding workshops  to identify the capabilities and business functions of each team, department and business unit.  Doing this means they can capture a full inventory of applications and touchpoints across the organisation and come up with a full picture of it’s current technology landscape.  The result should be a Technology Roadmap which accurately represents a path which is in alignment with the needs and strategy of the overall business.  The organisation’s Technology Roadmap is usually a living document which is assessed and re-aligned every quarter to ensure it continues to match the needs and direction of the organisation.

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June 3, 2018 |

Latest data on social media use

Latest research from the Pew Research Center shows that since the Center began surveying the use of different social media in 2012, Facebook remains the primary platform for most Americans. Roughly two-thirds of U.S. adults (68%) now report that they are Facebook users, and roughly three-quarters of those users access Facebook on a daily basis. With the exception of those 65 and older, a majority of Americans across a wide range of demographic groups now use Facebook.

But the social media story extends well beyond Facebook. The video-sharing site YouTube – which contains many social elements, even if it is not a traditional social media platform – is now used by nearly three-quarters of U.S. adults and 94% of 18- to 24-year-olds.
Read the full findings here: http://www.pewinternet.org/2018/03/01/social-media-use-in-2018/.

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July 12, 2015 |

More on new additions to the Oxford English Dictionary

ecotown:  a new town designed to have a minimal impact on the environment and to facilitate an environmentally responsible lifestyle for its residents.

freegan: a person who eats discarded food, typically collected from the bins of shops or restaurants, usually for ethical or ecological reasons.

gimmick: to mean a night out with friends.

twitterati:  the collective noun for those using Twitter who are prolific contributors or who who have high numbers of followers.

voluntourism (noun): tourists spending time doing voluntary work on development projects for a charitable organisation.

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January 25, 2015 |

There is no such word as ‘learnings’.

I am going to scream if I have to sit in one more meeting listening to people incorrectly using the word ‘learnings’ as a verb when it is a noun.

For some reason this word has become the darling of corporate meetings and is thrown around with gay abandon, e.g.  “there were some learnings from that project”. If you have learned something it is a lesson, so please just go for something correct and readily understandable like ‘lessons learned’ or ‘we learned some lessons’.

The fact that Microsoft Word’s spellchecker marks it as an error should be enough of a hint, but if you still don’t agree look up ‘learnings’ on a few of the reputable online dictionaries. You won’t find it, instead you will be presented with the word ‘learning’, as this definition from merriam-webster.com shows:

 Learning:noun the activity or process of gaining knowledge or skill by studying, practicing, being taught, or experiencing something : the activity of someone who learns.

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September 28, 2014 |

Scrum Master

I’m pleased to say I’ve completed my Scrum Master Certification!

Scrum Master Certificate.


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June 25, 2014 |

Lumo Energy CRM Go Live Today

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