ExpressVPN Teams Up with HP to Launch New Hardware

Virtual Private Network (VPN) Technology has been in existence for decades. In the beginning, VPNs were meant for big businesses and governmental organizations with lots of sensitive information. Over the years, individual users have realized the enormous risks they are exposed to when browsing the internet through public, unsecured connections and embraced the technology.

VPN works by tunneling protocols to set up a secure connection and hide the originating source. Additionally, a VPN employs high-level encryption standards to ensure that even if hackers manage to intercept your data, they wonโ€™t be able to make sense of it.

The HP and ExpressVPN Partnership

Consumer VPN expert ExpressVPN recently partnered with HP Inc. to launch a selected number of HP devices pre-installed with ExpressVPN protection to help protect usersโ€™ privacy and security while browsing the internet.ย 

For the start, HP has unveiled the Spectre x360 13 laptop model under the arrangement. The device comes with ExpressVPN with a 30-day trial period. Over the coming months, ExpressVPN will be incorporated on more HP models. After the trial period has elapsed, users will get an opportunity to sign up for a longer subscription.

About ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is the market leader in consumer VPNs. The VPN is popularly recognized for its impressive speed, security, reliability, and ease-of-use. With ExpressVPN, you can seamlessly secure your data traffic and guard your online presence against prying eyes. The VPN gives you peace of mind whenever you connect to public, unsecured Wi-Fi networks in coffee shops, hotels, and airports. It works by effectively encrypting your network data and securing your internet browsing experience with just a single click!

ExpressVPN TrustedServer Technology

ExpressVPNโ€™s TrustedServer technology is a major surge in innovation that enhances consumer privacy and security. It addresses the key risks posed by conventional VPN technologies. Traditionally, server owners installed the software and operating system during the initial server set up. They would then add amendments over time to improve security and privacy. Since every change made gives rise to the possibility of multiple changes on servers, this approach decreases the trust that each server is using exactly the same code.ย 

ExpressVPNโ€™s TrustedServer technology ensures that each of its 3,000+ VPN servers uses the most recent software. Each time the server reboots, it loads the most up-to-date read-only solution containing the whole software stack. As a consequence, ExpressVPN is aware of everything that runs on each server, which minimizes the possibility of exposure or misconfiguration. Itโ€™s a great way to enhance VPN security and user privacy.

HP Spectre x360 13 Features

HPโ€™s newest Spectre x360 13 laptop model cultivates an impressive design and mobility. It features heightened security and performance to allow users to enjoy their passions without limitations.

The new Spectre model features a dedicated mute mic and HP Webcam Kill Switch to ensure privacy. It also offers twice the performance of its predecessor and an extended battery life of up to 22 hours โ€“ enough to take you through the day.

About HP

HP is a global IT corporation that specializes in the sale of software, hardware, and other similar IT products and services. The company was founded in 1939 by two engineers, David Packard and William R. Hewlett. HPโ€™s product line includes Software, hardware, PCs and other computing devices, storage tools, scanners, printers, plotters, enterprise and industry-standard servers, and other imaging devices. In 2014, HP made a decision to split the company into two: HP, Inc. and Hewlett-Packard Enterprise.

Most users who prefer laptops and other mobile devices are always on the go. They constantly connect to unsecured, public Wi-Fi networks in restaurants, airports, coffee shops, etc. With the speedy and trustworthy ExpressVPN protection, users of the new Spectre x360 13 will have peace of mind wherever they go, knowing that their privacy and security are safeguarded regardless of the Wi-Fi network they connect to.

What is Phishing And How Can you Avoid it?

I wrote a post earlier this year and I want to share more information about this particular topic. I received some help from Techwarn ๐Ÿ”ฅ

Scams have existed since humanity took its first steps on Earth. Money is the motive for some, and this translates well into the Digital Age, where scams have become so frequent that your spam folder is the equivalent to a plague-ridden town.

One type of scam that reigns as the go-to scam for many is the phishing scam. Ever since the AOL days, emails have been sent trying to convince you that youโ€™re the offspring of royalty, or that you need to hold on to some money for an extremely rich person. Theyโ€™ll pay you back, they swear!

In these scams, you may notice the need for your bank info or card info. This is how the scam works. They tempt you with a story of grandeur, promise a significant reward, and then run away with your bank info once you reluctantly give it to them.

However, there are multiple types of phishing that you need to be on the lookout for and the best solution for avoiding certain phishing attacks.

Spearhead Phishing

When a fisherman uses a spear to fish, theyโ€™re emphasizing a quality > quantity approach. The same goes for spearhead phishing, where an attacker uses personalized information to trick their target.

For example, this attacker may find your social media account, take note of your personality type/interests, then send an email that seems authentic and enticing to you. Take care in clicking links or opening any attachments in an email, as it could be a product of spearhead phishing.

Solution

While spearhead phishing usually aims to get you to click a link and login to a website, using a password manager can be beneficial, as a password manager wonโ€™t autofill your credentials on websites it doesnโ€™t recognize.

Mass-Appeal Phishing

Many forms of phishing take place by sending one email in bulk to thousands, even millions of people. These are the most common, usually talking about how a Nigerian prince needs your help or a random citizen needing your help storing a large sum of money.

Just check your spam folder and youโ€™re destined to find a few of these. Mass-appeal phishing can even take place over the phone, such as those robocalls you get about your mortgage. This is the most common type and is easily the most avoidable.

Solution

Common sense works best when going through your emails or when receiving a random phone call. IF you have a bad feeling or it seems too go to be true, listen to your gut.

Download Phishing

Download phishing is a bit different from the rest, as instead of aiming for your bank info or personal information outright, the attacker attempts to make you download a malware-laden attachment. Usually, this involves spoofing an email that you know and trust then linking a .doc or .exe file.

Once you open the attachment, the malware/virus can settle onto your device, stealing whatever info itโ€™s designed to and even destroying your device if thatโ€™s what the attacker set out to do.

Solution

Donโ€™t click on any attachment linked in an email unless you are sure about the sender, AKA only friends, family, and close acquaintances.

The phishing scams I listed out are only 3 of the many types that take place, but these 3 are the most common. And as you may have noticed, my solution to 2/3 was being careful and using a bit of common sense (anything that is too good to be true).

You can use every antivirus and password manager on the planet, and while they may help, you are the only one who can 100% prevent phishing from affecting you. Next time you get a call from โ€œHeatherโ€ about your car insurance, hang up immediately. If someone offers you $50,000 through email, donโ€™t bother responding.

Well, unless you want to have a bit of fun with the attacker like a certain TED talker.

Earn Crypto using your browser

Anyone who want to earn BTC while browsing the internet should take a look at this browser. I make approximately $0.50 per day. It’s not a lot, but it is passive which I really like. I’ve made $6.38 in total and it’s still growing.
If you have a PC you don’t use very often you can utilize this browser to make it mine for you 24/7.

The browser is made with Chromium as the core, so it’s very similar to Chrome. It even supports Chrome Sync, so you’ll be able to import everything you had on Chrome to the CryptoTab Browser.

My little brother uses this browser too on his laptop so he can generate some passive income.

I recommend https://blockchain.com for creating a BTC wallet. It usually takes 1 business day for CryptoTab to transfer your withdrawal to your wallet, sometimes within an hour.

Happy mining ๐Ÿ˜Š

Need proof?

Withdrawal
Received $4.43
Received $1.22

Best Amazon Prime Day 2019 deals

Hey guys, Mitchel here.

So today is the Amazon Prime Day and ends soon! Only 20 hours to go
Here are the best products I’ve found on Amazon.

Don’t worry, I’ll try to update the list as soon as I find another great deal!๐Ÿ˜

I’ve been watching these products for a long time, waiting for the right moment to buy them.

Update

Razer Phone 2 (New): Unlocked Gaming Smartphone โ€“ 120Hz QHD Display โ€“ Snapdragon 845 โ€“ Wireless Charging โ€“ Chroma โ€“ 8GB RAM – 64GB – Mirror Black Finish
Original: $799.99
With Deal: $399.99 ($400 off) ๐Ÿค‘

LG V35 ThinQ with Alexa Hands-Free โ€“ Prime Exclusive Phone โ€“ Unlocked โ€“ 64 GB โ€“ Aurora Black
Original: $899.99
With Deal: $399.99 ($500 off) ๐Ÿค‘

Deals ๐Ÿค‘

LG 34GL750-B 34 Inch 21:9 Ultragear Curved WFHD (2560 x 1080) IPS 144Hz G-SYNC Compatible Gaming Monitor
Original: $549.99
With Deal: $379.99 ($170 off)

LG 27GL650F-B 27 Inch Full HD Ultragear Gaming Monitor with 144Hz Refresh Rate and HDR 10
Original: $349.99
With Deal: $249.00 ($100.99 off)

LG 34UM69G-B 34-Inch 21:9 UltraWide IPS Monitor with 1ms Motion Blur Reduction and FreeSync
Original: $379.99
With Deal: $279.99 ($100 off)

Acer Predator XB271HK bmiprz 27-inch IPS UHD (3840 x 2160) NVIDIA G-Sync Widescreen Display (2 x 2w speakers, 4- USB 3.0 Ports, HDMI & Display Port)
Original: $699.99
With Deal: $625.00 ($74.99 off)

Logitech G602 Lag-Free Wireless Gaming Mouse โ€“ 11 Programmable Buttons, Up to 2500 DPI
Original: $79.99
With Deal: $24.99 ($55.00 off)

ASUS ROG Zephyrus S Ultra Slim Gaming PC Laptop, 15.6โ€ 144Hz IPS Type, Intel Core i7-8750H CPU, GeForce GTX 1070, 16GB DDR4, 512GB PCIe SSD, Military-Grade Metal Chassis, Win 10 Home – GX531GS-AH76
Original: $1,799.00
With Deal: $1,249.99 ($549.01 off)

Bose SoundLink around-ear wireless headphones II, Black
Original: $229.00
With Deal: $159.00 ($70.00 off)

Logitech MX Sound 2.0 Multi Device Stereo Speakers with premium digital audio for desktop computers, laptops, and Bluetooth-enabled
Original: $99.99
With deal: $49.99 ($50 off)

SteelSeries Arctis 7 (2019 Edition) Lossless Wireless Gaming Headset with DTS Headphone:X v2.0 Surround for PC and PlayStation 4 – White
Original: $149.99
With deal: $99.99 ($50 off)

Samsung 128GB 100MB/s (U3) MicroSDXC Evo Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME128GA/AM)
Original: $24.99
With Deal: $19.49 ($5.50 off)

Kindle Paperwhite โ€“ Now Waterproof with 2x the Storage โ€“ Includes Special Offers
Original: $129.99
With Deal: $84.99 ($45 off)

LG 29″ 29WK500-P LED IPS LCD Monitor Dual HDMI UltraWide 21:9 AMD FreeSync Screen Split 2.0 – Black
Original: $159.99


Batch image resizing with Imagemagick

Automate resizing images on Linux

This tutorial shows you how to list your images in a csv file and resize every image in that list automatically.
WHOOO! AUTOMATION! ๐ŸŽ‰

Imagemagick

ImageMagick is a free and open-source software suite for displaying, converting, and editing raster image and vector image files. 

Prepare the scripts

  • Log in your Linux system
  • Run the following command in your bash console to list every JPG in the specified folder recursively and save it into a csv file
find /home/project/ -name "*.jpg" -print| while read LINE; do echo "$LINE" ; done > list_with_images.csv
  • Create a file named “resize_with_imagemagic.sh”
# define the settings
export MAGICK_THREAD_LIMIT=1;
export MAGICK_THROTTLE_LIMIT=100;
export MAGICK_MEMORY_LIMIT=500mb;

start=0;
end=$(cat $1 | wc -l)
# loop through every line of the given file
while read file; do
    echo "[x] Optimizing $file"
    echo $(($end-$((++start)))) elements remaining of $end
    replace="_optimized.jpg"
    targetFile="${file/.jpg/_optimized.jpg}"
    echo "Optimizing $file to $targetFile"
    convert "$file" -resize 1920 "$targetFile"
    # let the CPU rest for 10 sec
    sleep 10
done < $1

You can edit the script to your liking. it doesn’t replace the original image, but creates a new one with a postfix of “_optimized”.
Original: test_image.jpg
Optimized: test_image_optimized.jpg

Run the script

sh resize_with_imagemagic.sh list_with_images.csv

Learn more about Linux bash tricks

Keep your information safe from phishing attempts

Stay safe, keep it to yourself ๐Ÿ˜‰

Somewhere Between Fishing GIF by ABC Network - Find ...
Not fishing ๐Ÿ˜‚

What does Phishing mean?

Phishing is the fraudulent attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details, often for malicious reasons, by disguising as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.

Hackers try to manipulate their targets to gain information about them or to steal credentials of specific systems by sending emails, sms or even by calling and disguising themselves.

What can the hackers achieve?

  • Personal Information
  • Credit card details ๐Ÿค”
  • Login information

How can the data be used?

Your data has value on the black market. It can be sold to criminals to identify patterns. They’ll be able to know where you live, what your financial status is, etc.
AND buy things on behalf of your name ๐Ÿ˜ค

How can you recognise these emails? ๐Ÿ‘€

  1. The email is send globally, not just you. You’re sometimes put in the BCC
  2. The email has a lot of spelling mistakes
  3. You will be threatened with consequences if you do not take any action
  4. A lot of attachments
  5. The sender is from a unknown source ([email protected])

How to prevent these phishing attempts?

  1. Be aware of the different strategies of Phishing attacks
  2. Use spam filters. Google and Microsoft have already implemented build-in filters in your mail. Most of these emails will be flagged as “unsafe”
  3. Never fill in your personal information on a website that isn’t trusted
  4. Always check the email links, hover over them and inspect the link carefully

Examples from my inbox ๐Ÿ˜

Anyone can receive these emails. It’s up to us to know how the hackers are doing it, what kind of strategies they are using to create and deploy these attacks and to always stay up-to-date.

Some other examples can be found here

A handy cheat sheet can be found here

Conclusion

Always keep an eye out for these attacks. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Stay up-to-date with the latest news on this particular topic, because your information is too valuable.
Keep doing those security awareness sessions.

Thank you for reading, there’ll be more coming soon.

What happened in January 2019

January was a great month for me! ๐ŸŽ‰
I’m so hyped up for the upcoming months. What does Februari has the offer?
Yeah, I know. February is almost over ๐Ÿ˜….

What made Januari so special? ๐Ÿ‘€

  • Finally started blogging about my journey. I actually started blogging 6 years ago, but it was done privately ๐Ÿ˜‚. I was so scared back then.
  • Created a Facebook page specifically for my blog posts
  • I’ve finally found my true passion ๐Ÿ”ฅ
  • Bought a Kindle E-Reader and I LOVE IT! (Review coming soon)
  • Coaching Bits-Please is so much fun! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Time flies when you’re having fun, huh?

How was your January? I hope it was a productive month.
Or still lazy as ever? ๐Ÿ˜

Start with the end in mind

Shape your future ๐Ÿ’ช

Have you ever taken the time to think about your future. To ask yourself what it’ll be like when you’re 40-50-60 years old? What you’ve achieved in life? How will your character look like?

Will you be the same person you are today? Or a better version of yourself?

How can you determine and shape yourself to become that person? How can you control the outcome of your character? There is a way to do this, but it’s not easy.

Picture yourself at your own funeral.

There will be 5 types of people there:

  1. Family
  2. Coworkers
  3. Friends
  4. Your partner
  5. Your children

You need to define the words you want them to say to you. You need to shape their words by shaping yourself.

Family

What will your family say to you? How did they experience your presence? Did they experience kindness, helpfulness, love? What do you want your family to say? Define that and shape yourself.

Coworkers

What will your coworkers say to you? Were you a hard working employee? Did you have a special bond with some of them? Did they like you? What do you want them to say? Shape yourself to your answers.

Friends

Friends, ah yes โ˜บ๏ธ. What will your childhood friends say? What will your new friends say? Did you share your secrets with them? How special or close were you with them? Did you really care about them? Were you helpful? Shape yourself.

Your partner โค๏ธ

Your partner, oh no ๐Ÿ’”. He or she will be devastated!!! To lose the happiness and laughter you’ve brought into the world. How was his or her experience? How did you treat your partner? Were you loving, caring, a great mom or dad, supportive, motivational? How do you want your partner to experience you as a person?

Your children โ˜บ๏ธโค๏ธ

Your children ๐Ÿ˜ญ. What will your kids say to you? Were you a loving parent? Did you help them achieve their goals? Did you show support? How much did you care for them? Was there an unconditional love between you and your kids? Did you make enough time for them? What do you want your kids to say? ๐Ÿ’”

I know, it’s hard. Especially the last ones ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ’”. I got so emotional writing this post. We don’t have much time, so be loving, caring, humble, supportive to everyone. Show the true you! โ˜บ๏ธ

Take control of your life and begin to shape the person you want to become right now!

If you know where you want to go, the road will be crystal clear to follow. If not, it’ll be dark and you’ll get stuck. You’ll begin to walk circles. You’ll get confused and angry because you can’t see where you’re going.

I highly recommend you to read the book called “The 7 habits of highly effective people“. It can help you shape your character.

Take care of yourself and especially your loved ones. Shape yourself. โค๏ธ

What’s your definition of success?

What’s your definition of success?

So, what is it?
To become rich? To be wealthy? A lot of women? To have traveled the world? A lot of kids? To have become an astronaut?

Everyone has a different opinion about this topic. Everyone is unique. It would be boring if everyone was the same ๐Ÿ˜…

DREAM BIG! It doesn’t hurt to dream.
Close your eyes and think about your future. What do you see?
Can you see your future self? Can you see yourself in that fancy car you’ve always wanted?

Use your dreams to motivate yourself on a daily basis.
Don’t give up on your dreams. Just do it!

Im Funny Dammit GIFs - Find & Share on GIPHY

What’s my definition?

I WANT TO BE FREE! Whooo!! ๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿค‘
Free to travel to anywhere I want to at any moment.
To travel with my beautiful wife and children. To be wealthy enough to not worry about money, because money works for me ๐Ÿ˜

To be able to spend quality time with my loved ones. To have successful business ( Soon ๐Ÿ˜Œ )

I can go on and on. I know what I want and how to get there. That’s why I’m full of energy and enthusiasm. I can’t wait to experience my future self.

Success is achieved by those who try and keep trying.

W. Clement Stone
Success GIFs - Find & Share on GIPHY

Image compression with Squoosh

Squoosh is a tool made by the Google Chrome Community.
I personally recommend this tool. Everything is handled locally, so no additional data is sent to the server

Squoosh is an image compression web app that allows you to dive into the advanced options provided by various image compressors.

Squoosh Github Repository

Here’s a quick tutorial for you ๐Ÿค“

  • Select an image or multiple images you want to compress
  • Drag and drop it into the application
  • Modify the settings
  • Click the blue icon in the bottom right corner to download the compressed image

Give it a try! ๐Ÿ‘