Question: I got a sextortion email with my password in the subject line. I'm worried, should I respond? How did they get my password?
- John W, via email
Answer: Don't respond - this is a common scam. They've made up something about some viewing session they claim you had and then posted a password you recognise to dazzle you and make you believe it must be true.
The way they got the password was from a large dump database of exposed emails or passwords sometime over the last five years. If you go to the website haveibeenpwned.com and put in your email address, it will tell you whether that email address has been caught in any big data breach. If so, it's possible that the password associated with it may also have been copied.
Don't panic - it's unlikely that the purchaser of the breached database is going through accounts one by one to see what they can do.
They're trying to make money, so they'll send out a mass email to the addressees with the password in the subject line to shock them.
Please, though - change your password. Do it at least once or twice a year, preferably more often.
Because although the email you got is almost certainly a scam, it is sometimes possible to be badly compromised if your password is too easily available.
This is especially so if you use the same password for multiple services over many years, something many of us will probably plead guilty to.
Question: Could I ask whether Samsung's Galaxy S20 Ultra is worth the extra for the camera? Or is the S20+ too close for the cheaper cost?
- Shane, via DM
Answer: Having tested them both, I would say that the S20+ is better value for most people. It's €250 cheaper and the additional camera, screen and battery specification that you get with the S20 Ultra will be too marginal a draw for most for that extra cash premium. But better value again is the Galaxy S20, which is almost identical to the S20+ (bar a depth sensor and a slightly smaller battery) but costs another €200 less.
Recommendation: Samsung Galaxy S20 (€929 from Harvey Norman or from €799 on prepay from Carphone Warehouse)
Question: I bought my cocooning parents a tablet for better connectivity. They are not very familiar with technology. I was wondering if I can install WhatsApp on the tablet using one of their mobile phone numbers whilst not interfering with the normal day-to-day working on their non-smart mobile phones?
- Nessa Stokes, via DM
Answer: You can use WhatsApp on a tablet but unless the tablet has a SIM card in it (most don't), you can only do it with an account that has already been set up on a smartphone.
In other words, you can't set up a new account from scratch on a tablet using another phone's number. The only exception to this is if you're willing to try a tricky tech process known as a side-loading, but this isn't easy for a novice and all of the tech companies recommend against it. It is also possible to get access to WhatsApp on a laptop or desktop (at web.whatsapp.com). But again, this is only an accompanying service aimed at those who already have an account attached to a phone number on a smartphone.
Question: I am getting reminders on my phone which say "cloud storage almost full, sign up for additional storage at €50 per year". How can I clean up or remove storage? If I ignore these messages, what will happen?
- Joseph O'S, via email
Answer: It depends what service you're referring to, but I'm assuming you mean iCloud. For people with iPhones, iCloud storage costs 99 cents per month for 50GB of storage, €2.99 per month for 200GB or €9.99 for 2,000GB (also called '2TB').
By default, you get 5GB of storage on iCloud, which is only really enough for a modest amount of photos, videos and app data.
This is probably what you have right now.
You don't have to sign up for more, but it means it won't auto save some new content you put on there (such as new photos) from your phone into the iCloud (which you might want if you're changing phones in future).
One alternative is to sign up for a free unlimited photo service like Google Photos (free app) and set it so your photos and videos automatically upload to it.
Then you can clear them from your phone, knowing they'll still be safe and instantly retrievable.
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