Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

The Wrap – Password protection and going on scam watch

This week on The Wrap, we’ll check your password and help you go on the defence against SMS scams, plus what’s new in the world of TVs and phone and more, all in five.

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For the beginning of May 2022, this is The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup, and as we push into the middle of the year, it can be all too easy to forget about the maintenance and hygiene our digital life requires.

This week saw World Password Day, one of the days where that maintenance is actually important to think about, because so many passwords are bad, and don’t need to be. You know the sort: if your passwords have your name or a set of numbers like “123” or “123456”, you’re rocking what many in the industry would consider a “bad password”, and it’s time to move on and secure your life. World Password Day is partly a reminder to do just that, and while it was one day – May 5, also Cinco De Mayo – it’s a day that can be practised any day.

However, while password security can be improved, typically to passwords that are difficult to remember, we’re also moving to a world where password won’t even necessarily be something you have to remember. Not entirely, anyway.

The password-less world of passwords might sound a little ironic, but it’s part of the future we’re now in, and if you’ve ever needed your phone to log into My Gov, Google, or anywhere else – where you get sent a code as a part of multi-factor authentication – you’re experiencing the beginnings of that password-less world of passwords.

Multi-factor is one way passwords are evolving, and it’s only going to become more normal. Passwords can be stolen, but there’s a good chance your phone is always in your possession, and that makes it a perfect form of password protection, provided you find a way to not get fooled.

Fooling is exactly what scammers are up to, and regardless of who you use for your mobile in Australia, there’s a good chance you’re seeing a lot of scam attempts at the moment.

Telstra has some algorithms working to reduce them, but they’re still coming through, and we suspect it’s much the same on other networks, as well. Of particular interest lately is how scammers are getting their messages to look like the real deal, using the same company ID on text messages as Australia Post.

If a scam has popped up in your messages from AusPost recently, you’re not alone, but there are some telltale signs, and who sent you the message isn’t one of them. If you trust who sent you the message entirely, that’s one way to fall for a scam, so look for some other signs, namely the website you’re being directed to.

Real Australia Post messages direct you to the mypost website, which is m-y-p-o dot s-t, and scammers can’t actually take hold of that website. Instead, they’ll try to redirect you to something that sounds convincing, such as one we saw this week of redeliverysite dot com. That’s pretty convincing, but it’s not the real deal. Yet if you go there, you’ll find a website designed to look real, and then ask you for your credit card details.

That’s your other lesson: if the postal service is suddenly asking for your credit card details to get a delivery back to you, hit the warning bells, because that’s a telltale sign for a scam.

Scammers are after money, and giving them your credit card details is one way of making it happen. If you come to a website from a phone text message and it asks for your credit card or bank details, tread carefully, and think about where you’re at. Check the website address, because it’s very likely to be a scam, like this bunch turning up lately.

The best way to beat scams is with education, and it’s something software can’t really help with yet. So take these lessons down, and learn what to delete and move on.

Moving on to the rest of the show, it wasn’t all passwords and scams this week, with news that Oppo was bringing a big phone with a 50 megapixel camera to the $400 price point in the Oppo A96, while Lenovo and Dell each have new laptops on the way, the former for consumers and the latter for the workstation crowd.

And LG also has some new TVs on the way to Australian shores, and quite a lot of them. The 2022 LG TV range covers a gamut of technologies, including the high-end organic LED technology known as “OLED”, a mixture of quantum dot and mini-LED LG calls “QNED”, plus some other TVs, too, all of which offer a choice between 4K and 8K depending on what you want.

Picture quality is largely expected across the range, with OLED the best followed by QNED, and then the rest of the technologies.

You probably won’t need to spend an enormous amount of money on one of those screens, but it seems LG is looking to cover a big assortment of choices with its 2022 launch, which at least means there’s plenty to consider this year.

For now, you’ve been listening to The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup. Everything on this show and more can be found at the wrap dot com dot au, and a new episode can be found each week at Listener, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts. For now, have a great week, and we’ll see you next time on The Wrap. Stay safe, stay sane, and take care.

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