Washington state files suit against Comcast for $100 Million!

Everyone who has used Comcast has had their fair share of problems with the service. From outages to throttling and now data caps on their plans! Well It seems that the state of Washington has had enough of it.

Comcast offered a $4.99 protection plan in the state that was advertised as insurance for a few common problems that would require a technician. Here is a statement from the Washington AG

"lawsuit accuses Comcast of misleading 500,000 Washington consumers and deceiving them into paying at least $73 million in subscription fees over the last five years for a near-worthless 'protection plan' without disclosing its significant limitations," the state AG's announcement said. "Customers who sign up for Comcast’s Service Protection Plan pay a $4.99 monthly fee ostensibly to avoid being charged if a Comcast technician visits their home to fix an issue covered by the plan."

They are also alleging Comcast of credit check violations, claiming that the company "improperly obtained a deposit from over 6,000 Washington consumers."

Bob Ferguson Washington Wttorney General

The suit said. "Comcast also requires customers to pay a deposit if the credit screening process reveals the customer has a low credit score. However, Comcast obtained a deposit from thousands of Washington customers with high credit scores, revealing that they improperly ran credit checks on customers who paid a deposit to avoid the credit check, and/or improperly collected deposits from customers who were not required to pay a deposit."

I predict that Comcast's high paid lawyers and lobbyists will find a way to convince the judge to throw out the case ($$$) but it just shows how eager they are to swindle you out of your money.

 

 

Read the full text of the lawsuit here:http://agportal-s3bucket.s3.amazonaws.com/uploadedfiles/Another/News/Press_Releases/2016_08_01Complaint.pdf

Source: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2016/08/washington-state-sues-comcast-says-it-sold-near-worthless-service-plans/

Still want Windows 10 but missed the deadline?

A Youtube user found that by changing the clock on your machine to when the offer was still available it will let you get the free upgrade.

Once the clock has been changed to July 28th, the prompt will provide the option to start the upgrade. After clicking that, it will begin downloading Windows 10 and the installation will commence.

There is also another method by entering a windows 7 key to activate a windows 10 instillation.

If you still want the free windows 10 upgrade give us a call any time!

Microsoft Announces Plans To Lay Off 2850 More Employees

This week Microsoft announced they will be laying off 2850 more employees than they had previously stated. This coming after the 1850 lay offs they announced in may earlier this year.

 

Almost all of the lay offs are from their Nokia Division leaving them almost nothing to show for from their $7 billion acquisition but some really good camera phones with abysmal sales. With over 12,000 lay offs in the last two years it is pretty clear that Microsoft is scaling down its phone business and spend more time pushing its successful products.

 

Sources:

https://www.engadget.com/2016/07/29/microsoft-is-laying-off-2-850-more-workers/

https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/789019/000119312516662209/d187868d10k.htm

 

White House Unveils New Cyber Security Threat Chart

The white house has just recently approved the usage of a simple cyber security threat chat. I doubt we will see a 1984 doomsday clock style report anytime soon. This will be used mostly internally and the people will probably never know what the threat level is on.

 

These are the determining factors to the chart,

• The severity of a given incident;

• The urgency required for responding to a given incident;

• The seniority level necessary for coordinating response efforts; and

• The level of investment required of response efforts

 

Sources:

https://www.engadget.com/2016/07/26/presidential-policy-directive-on-cyberattacks/

https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/documents/Cyber%2BIncident%2BSeverity%2BSchema.pdf

The Windows 10 anniversary update is out, here's our rundown.

 

1. Major improvements to security.
Microsoft edge will now feature native bio-metric features so you wont have to worry about saving passwords.
Along with some improvements to the way windows defender works they are also adding a new product for enterprise users to detect attacks early.

2. Windows Ink.
"Quickly and easily take a note, sketch on a screenshot, or draw an idea.

Smart Sticky Notes help you remember common tasks like reminding you of flight times or offering directions using Maps.

Key apps have new ink-specific features, like using handwriting in Office, ink annotations in Microsoft Edge or drawing custom routes in Maps."

3. Improvements to Cortana
"Cortana is now available above your lock screen so you can do things like ask questions, play music from your PC or set a reminder without unlocking your device.

Cortana can save and recall key information, like your frequent flier number or where you parked at the airport. You can also add photos to make your reminders visual, like a photo of a bottle of wine you enjoyed at a restaurant.

Cortana can give you notifications across all the devices you have with Cortana – like sharing directions across devices or from text or messaging services on your phone."

4. Improvements to Microsoft Edge
"Building on strong power efficiency already available in Microsoft Edge, the Anniversary Update includes even more power-saving improvements, using fewer CPU cycles, consuming less memory, and minimizing the impact of background activity and peripheral content. Microsoft Edge lasts three hours longer than Google Chrome—long enough to finish the final movie in your favorite trilogy.

Microsoft Edge Extensions, such as Pinterest’s “Pin It Button,” Amazon Assistant, AdBlock, Adblock Plus and LastPass, will be available in the Windows Store with the Anniversary Update to add features to your browser and personalize your experience.

A new accessibility architecture for Microsoft Edge supports modern web standards, including HTML5, CSS3, and ARIA. With the Anniversary Update, page structure and content are now exposed more clearly with assistive technology. Visual presentation of web pages in high contrast mode is greatly improved to provide additional visual context, while preserving text contrast. Also, form entry when using keyboard navigation and screen readers improve in this update making the browsing experience for people of all abilities better."

 

Source: https://blogs.windows.com/windowsexperience/2016/06/29/windows-10-anniversary-update-available-august-2/

Spacex completes another successful mission from Cape Canaveral Florida!

This marks their fourth successful landing of stage one. After accelerating to a speed of nearly 1600 meters per second(3579Mp/H) the stage one booster sucessfully fell back to earth and landed on an unmanned drone ship in the ocean using nothing but its on board stabilizers and booster. This mission carried over 2 Tons of supplies waiting to dock with the international space station very soon.

Their goal is to get the cost of transporting materals into space below $10,000/kg. They also announced that this fall they will be relaunching one of the recycled stage 1 boosters!

 

Windows upgrade problems.

For the most part Windows 10 has been pretty stable. Working with as many computers as we do I can say that there are only problems on about 5% of the upgrades, What some people don't realize is that previous windows upgrades were littered with just as many and sometimes even more problems (looking at you Vista).

XP to vista was almost impossible because of driver related issues. Windows 8 had the largest UI change since Microsoft moved away from DOS. 

If you are having issues with windows 10 after upgrading ITPRO did a really good write up about most of the issues that we see, If you PC is slow after the upgrade you may have a bad hard drive that was worsened by the upgrade.

 

http://www.itpro.co.uk/operating-systems/25802/15-windows-10-problems-and-how-to-fix-them-5