iOS Tip 199 - Audit privacy settings periodically

There are many permissions that can be granted to apps, such as access to the camera, the microphone, your contacts (why does Google Maps need my contacts?), and your location.  It’s a good idea to keep track of which permissions you’ve given to which apps, and revoke any permissions that are not strictly needed. For example, if you posted a photo to Twitter once, but you aren’t likely to do it again, it would be a good idea to remove the right to look at your photos from the Twitter app.

In Settings, scroll down and tap on Privacy. Here resides the master list of all permissions and which apps you’ve granted them to. Go through all of them periodically, and revoke any permissions that you don’t think a particular app needs.

If your 2018 MacBook fails, it may be nearly impossible to recover data: Here's why

With the new T2 chip, there is no data access recovery port on the new MacBook Pros. While Apple may have another backup plan for data recovery, it has not yet shared it with users (or us).

Since users frequently save important data on their devices, this omission should encourage them to more heavily invest in a cloud backup solution and/or external hard drive

According to Apple's internal 2018 MacBook Pro Service Readiness Guide, technicians are advised to encourage you to backup to Time Machine frequently. Currently this is the only way to preserve your data if your laptop fails.


Hot Corners for Fast Access

Your Desktop can be a busy places, with a bunch of open windows cluttering the screen. If you want to look at the Desktop or see another window, you may find yourself clicking around or using keyboard shortcuts to switch views. Did you know that you can access many of the Mac’s special views with a simple  movement?

A little-known feature in macOS called Hot Corners makes this possible. The key to unlocking Hot Corners is in System Preferences (click the   top left corner ) in either the Desktop & Screen Saver pane or the Mission Control pane. In either one, click the Hot Corners button (bottom left or right) to set up your hot corners.   

Hot Corners can be quite useful, and how you choose to take advantage of them is completely up to you. We do recommend trying them out, you can always turn them back off if you find yourself disliking the behavior.

iOS Tip 198 - Screen Shot Mark Up

Open the app you want to screenshot and go to the exact screen you want to capture.  Press and hold the Power button  and click the Home button at the exact same time for a brief moment.  A preview  will appear in the lower left hand side of the display.
You  need to tap on it if you want to edit the screen capture, otherwise it will disappear after a few seconds.
Your screenshot will still be saved to your camera roll as normal.

Apple Users Be Aware of This Phishing Campaign

You receive a call or voicemail claiming to be from Apple support notifying you of suspicious activity with your Apple iCloud ID. The computer-generated recording’s goal is to snare you into giving up your iCloud ID and password as part of a new phishing campaign.

The call comes from a random or unknown number and if you don't pick up you’ll get a voicemail phishing for your iCloud ID and password:

“Hi, I am Jennifer, and I am calling you from online support Apple. This is to inform you that we have noticed some suspicious activity with your iCloud ID. We have been getting the notification on our main server the past few days. We seriously recommend you call (phone number given). I repeat (phone number). We request you not to use your computer or other Mac devices before speaking to our certified technicians. For help and support please call us.”

This is a clear attempt to scare you into calling the number back and giving up your Apple iCloud credentials.

There's no way Apple support will ever contact a customer using a computer-generated voice nor will they ever ask for your iCloud credentials.

Protection For Your Mac, Phone or iPad

Here are the reasons we LOVE Safeware:  this year (2018) through May customers have saved over $18400 in repairs on damaged computers.  The final repair bill for them:     $0.00!

Last year customer saved over $36,000.   Safeware protection for all your electronics.

Safeware, in business since 1982, covers broken screens, liquid spills and accidental damage - no software issues or cosmetic scratches - pretty much anything that can damage your device.   You invested a lot of money on your (or your kids)  Apple equipment - $1200 ... $1800 or more.  With Safeware:

  • as low as $150 for total - NO DEDUCTIBLE - coverage
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  • iPad or iPhone only $50 for 12 months with up to 3 years of coverage


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•Accidental Damage coverage for drops, spills, submersion, and cracked screens

•Mechanical and electrical failure

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Beware “iCloud Breach” Phone Scam

There's  a new phone scam targeted at Apple users. The automated message claims to be from “Apple Support Care” and warns that your iCloud account has been breached and that you should stop going online.  It then tells you to press 1 to be connected to Apple Support.

This is just another form of the classic tech support scam, and if you get such a call, hang up immediately.

The best defense against this sort of intrusion is carrier-level call blocking, since then the spam calls never even make it to your iPhone.  AT&T offers the AT&T Call Protect app and service, and T-Mobile offers Scam Block.  Both are reportedly quite good but you must sign up for them manually.

For those on other cellular networks, there are a variety of call-blocking apps that integrate with the call-blocking capabilities of iOS 10 and up. These can identify calls as coming from spammers or even block them right off, based on information from crowd-sourced databases. This approach works better than blocking the numbers manually yourself, since spammers are unlikely to use the same number twice when calling you, but they do reuse numbers across multiple people. So if five or ten people report a particular number as bad and then it’s used to call you, these apps can know to identify or block the call.


Find What Data Apple Has On You

A complete tally of info Apple has collected about you is a simple web form away.

If you'd like to get a copy of your own data record from Apple, here's how to get the ball rolling:

    •    Start by going to Apple's Privacy Questions page, here:
    •    From the single pulldown menu on this page: "I have a question about," select "Privacy Issues."
    •    Fill out the resulting form, including your name, email and location.
    •    Add a sentence or two requesting all your data, for example: "I'd like a copy of all the data Apple has on me."
The data delivered includes all App Store and iTunes purchases connected to your Apple ID, serial numbers of all your Apple devices, and even a list of songs you've used with iTunes Match.


iOS Tip 196 - Find emoji's Fast

Instead of sorting through rows and rows of emoji to find the perfect reaction, you can turn your words into images. Open Messages, type out a line of text, and tap the emoji button to the left of the spacebar. All of the words that can be replaced with emojis will then turn orange. To swap a word for its brighter pictorial representation, just tap on a highlighted word and the emoji will drop in. If that orange word can match multiple emojis, you get to choose your favorite one

iOS Tip 195 Level Your Camera in iOS 11

Have you ever tried to use your iPhone or iPad take a picture of a box, a sheet of paper, or something else that’s precisely rectangular, but been annoyed that the image came out skewed because it was difficult to hold your camera straight?

Turn on Grid in Settings > Camera, so thin white lines divide the viewfinder into a grid of nine rectangles. The lines help you compose your shots with the rule of thirds, so it’s a useful option to enable anyway.

The trick with the camera level:  it appears only if you’re holding the iPhone or iPad flat, so the camera points straight down toward the floor or straight up toward the sky. It manifests itself as two crosshairs:  a yellow crosshair marks the position where the camera will be level, and a white crosshair shows the camera’s current position.

Using the level is simple: tilt the camera until the two crosshairs merge into a single yellow plus sign. The hard part is keeping them together while tapping the shutter button.

iOS Tip 194 - Stop Apps From Hassling You

Stop apps hassling you for ratings

I know that feedback is important to app developers, but sometimes it gets a bit overwhelming. This is probably one of the things in apps that annoys me the most.
Fortunately, Apple now offers users a way to put an end to it. Unfortunately, the setting is buried and unless you know where to look for it, you'll probably never come across it
Here's how to access it:
    •    Settings > iTunes & App Store and then toggle In-App Ratings & Reviews to off

iOS Tip - 193 Avoid This Disaster ….

Recently we had a customer who was having issues with her phone and the only potential resolution  was to restore the device to factory settings.  With over two years of pictures on the phone she didn’t want to do that as ALL the pictures would be deleted and they were not backed up.

Make sure the pictures on your iPad/iPhone are properly backed up.  When you're connected to your Mac or PC, open up iTunes and right-click on your icon in the Devices list and select Backup. You don't need to worry about Apps you've downloaded or any purchases as they're always available to you from Apple.  Content you've created, such as photos and videos is what's important and at risk of loss.  

You can also use Apples’ iCloud or another online service.   The least expensive cloud service we’ve found is Backblaze.

Find iTunes Duplicates

iTunes  12.0 offers a simple way to track down and find duplicate songs in a music library:

    1    Open the “iTunes” app if you have not done so already
    2    Go to your music library in iTunes
    3    Pull down the “File” menu and then go to “Library”
    4    From the “Library” sub-menu, choose “Show Duplicate Items”
    5    iTunes will gather a list of potentially duplicate songs that you can peruse through and verify independently

Once finished, you can click the “Done” button at the Display Duplicate screen to go back to the regular track listing of your iTunes library.

iTunes will show as “duplicates” two different versions of the same song if they share the same track name, even if the songs and files are actually totally different. This is important to understand, particularly if you have a lot of music from the same artist, with live albums, Greatest Hits collections, or remixes and so forth.

use the song “Time” column to see how long each track is. If the tracks are the exact same length, it’s more likely the songs are actually the same and not just different recordings with the same name. Also be sure to pay attention to the Album name too, since that can be a helpful indicator.

Go here for iTunes 11.0.1


iOS Tip 191 - Customize Control Center

You can customize Control Center so you can quickly change the settings for the things you do most. Want to be ready when inspiration hits? Add a Voice Memos control. Want to dim the lights in the dining room with a tap? Add Home controls. Here’s how:
    1.    Go to Settings > Control Center.
    2.    Tap Customize Controls.
    3.    To add controls, tap +. To remove controls, tap _, then tap Remove.
Want to rearrange controls in Control Center? Just go to Settings > Control Center, tap Customize Controls, then touch and hold  next to the controls and drag them in the order that you want them.