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Bob has a very old version of Microsoft Office and he wants to know if it's safe to continue using. Leo says that this week, a "zero day flaw" was found in Microsoft Office through the RTF rendering engine, and hackers have been taking advantage of that. So if there's an update, update it. Leo also says not to use Internet Explorer. Use Google Chrome instead. He should turn off the feature that automatically launches an app when he goes to a website as well. If he's careful, he should be able to keep using his version of Office, though.
Leo says that Firefox has bookmark syncing, so he should check in his settings to enable that. He can also save them to a USB key and Firefox will import them. Leo also says he should be careful not to copy all of his settings from his old computer. There is a transfer wizard that he could use to copy everything from his old machine, but Leo doesn't generally recommend that. If he plans to keep the old system for awhile, he should just copy over what he needs as he needs it. It's a good idea to start over.
This week, privacy advocates were up in arms over the story that Microsoft had read the personal Hotmail of an employee they suspected was stealing company secrets. The argument was that that Hotmail is a free service that Microsoft owns and since the employee knows that, they had the right to read his email to see what he was up to. Microsoft has promised to go through more mainstream legal channels before doing it again.
John was using Microsoft's built in voice recognition to dictate in Word. He uses the Logitech G35 USB headset and it learned his voice fast. But it won't work at all with chat windows like Skype, or others. It just won't function at all. Leo says that some applications don't support it dictation. Leo suggests doing a test call on Skype to be sure he's getting a good connection. If he has a good connection and dictation still doesn't work in Skype chat, it may not be supported.
Johnny is in LA this week and had a nice 5.3 earthquake. It shook him up quite nicely, but he survived. The chatroom wants him to talk about the Malaysian flight. Technical difficulties prevented us from continuing the interview, but Leo says to go to JohnnyJet.com for all the latest travel news.
Chris has noticed that when he visits a web page, he'll start hearing audio but he doesn't know which tab it's coming from. Leo says that's very annoying and it's becoming quite a problem because sites will auto play video. Google Chrome actually puts an audio icon on the tab that is playing the audio, so Leo recommends using Google Chrome as his browser.
Suzanne's mother has a Windows XP machine and she's wondering what she should do after April 8. Leo says that Microsoft ending life of support for XP really isn't as terrible as it was first believed. If she practices safe computing, her mother should be ok. Here are a few things she can do to protect herself on Windows XP:
Pat has quite a few computers, and is wondering if there's a good way to manage all of his data on one single machine. Leo says that the Cloud can make just about any computer "his" computer. With his data in the cloud, he can just use any computer or device he wants. Leo uses a computer at work, at home, and has a tablet and a phone. Leo also has a FileTransporter, which for $250 gives him his own cloud access.
Walt and is using an old server as a home computer. He uses Alarms.com to monitor his home security system, and it works wired. But when he changes over to the wireless configuration on the camera, one of his cameras will not connect.
Leo says that there may be a DHCP conflict that's preventing it, or the password based security is the issue. He should try turning off security on the router to see if it works. It may be the older camera can't be supported with the newer security standard used by the router.
George got a nasty piece of malware called "Search Conduit." Leo says that Conduit is bad, even though they swear they're legit. But if it takes over his browser and he can't get rid of it, then it's the very definition of malware. Leo advises downloading MalwareBytes from MalwareBytes.org. If that doesn't work, he should try booting into "Safe Mode" and try it then. If that doesn't work, he should try one of these: