Oct 8, 2012 / 5:00 am
Have you ever clicked on a link in an email only to have nothing happen? Have you ever wondered if it’s safe to click on a link in an email? I have an example of both situations this week.
How come clicking on a link in email does not open a browser anymore?
Last month I wrote about File Associations and how to fix them. Why would you ever want to know that? Here’s one reason. Not a week goes by that I don’t hear from someone that clicking on a link in email doesn’t open up a web page. Sometimes this is a symptom of an infected computer, but most often this happens when you uninstall a browser and set a different browser as default. It’s easy to fix.
If you want those links to open in Internet Explorer again:
- Close all browsers
- Close your email program
- Click on Start
- Click on Default Programs
- Click on Set your default programs
- Click on Internet Explorer on the left side
- Click on Set this program as default on the right side
- OK your way out
Next time you click on a link in your email, the page should open in Internet Explorer.
Another way to fix this problem is from within Internet Explorer:
- Close your email program
- Open Internet Explorer
- Click on Tools (If you don’t see Tools, click on the gear icon at the top right)
- Click on Internet Options
- Click on Programs
- In the top section, click on Make default and Tell me if Internet Explorer is not the default web browser
- OK your way out
If you do that before you uninstall another browser, you’ll likely avoid the “broken link” problem in the first place.
What’s the story with these "Microsoft Service Agreement" emails?
Have you received an email purporting to be from Microsoft asking you to click on an attachment in order to review a Service Agreement? Be careful!
Microsoft HAS made changes to the service agreement. For one thing they've put things into plain English instead of "Legal-ese." You can view the new service agreement here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-live/microsoft-services-agreement. That is a safe link.
Microsoft DID send email to users of hotmail, outlook.com, livemail, and so on. However, bad people doing bad things took those emails, created a template and changed the links to go to malicious software exploit sites. How can you tell whether you got the real, safe version or the scammer’s imitation?
Well, if you are reading the email in Hotmail or Outlook.com, the email will have a green shield, indicating it’s from a trusted sender. The email is safe to open, (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/outlook/security) according to Microsoft.
But, no matter where you are reading the email, if the version you are reading asks you to click on an attachment DO NOT CLICK ON THE ATTACHMENT. Doing that will launch a very ugly piece of software called a trojan.
Another way to know whether or not something like this is legitimate is to hover your cursor over the link (without clicking on the link!) and see if the link goes to a legitimate site.
How do you organize your passwords?
A couple of weeks ago (http://rlis.com/columns/column371.htm) I announced a contest. Winners will receive a copy of the Internet Password Organizer (http://www.internetpasswordorganizer.com/Products.html). I asked you to tell me how you organize your passwords now and why you need an organizer.
I figured it would be a cinch to pick the winning entries. I was wrong. I am stunned at the number of wonderful responses I received. I wish I had a copy of the Internet Password Organizer to give away to everyone who entered the contest. I am contacting the winners and will share some of the stories in future columns. Thank you to everyone who took the time to enter and share their password organization problems and solutions!
Happy Thanksgiving to my readers and customers in Canada!
Do you need help with your computer? I'm here to help you and your home or business computer get along!
Cate Eales runs Computer Care Kelowna (http://computercarekelowna.com/) a mobile service helping home users and businesses get along with their computers. To arrange an appointment phone her at 250-764-7043. Cate also welcomes your comments and suggestions. Send email to email@example.com.
You can read previous columns here: http://rlis.com/column.htm . If you'd like to subscribe to this column by email, please visit this link: http://www.feedblitz.com/f/f.fbz?Sub=20618 . It's easy, and free. If you'd prefer the RSS Feed, click here: http://rlis.com/rlis.xml.
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