Even seemingly legitimate texts can be fronts for scams #nigeria | #nigeriascams | #lovescams

Scammers are now adding hoaxes to legitimate text messages. It’s getting easier to be fooled.

Recently, a friend of mine got a legitimate text about her furniture delivery. It asked her to choose a date. When none of the dates worked for her, she wrote down the number listed in the text, to get more options. What made it suspicious? She couldn’t just tap it to initiate a call like you normally can on a cellphone. And the guy who answered said: “How old are you?” When she said “70,” he said, “You sound so young, like you’re 30.” Then he added: “I’ll need your credit card number.”https://news.google.com/__i/rss/rd/articles/”Why should I give you that?” she asked, before hanging up.

The AARP warns about this, pointing out that even some of their own texts have included scams. Nationwide there were 5,700 fraudulent messages in 2019. Victims lost over $137 million in 2021 alone. Another 17,000 compromised texts are expected this year. The moral is: If you get a suspicious text, don’t reply. Don’t even write “No” or “Stop.”


A new version of the free Amazon Photos app for Android or iPhone makes it easier to find everything you’re looking for.

For example, tap “2020,” then “people,” then your friend or loved one. I tapped “2014” and saw a ton of junk photos and duplicates to delete.

If you tap the smile logo in the left corner, you’ll see an option to upload photos manually, otherwise it’s automatic. Click the paper airplane on the right to share photos privately with groups of family and friends. The people you select will get an email with a link to the photos you choose. When you add to the collection, they’ll see the new additions along with the old.

Besides the easy searching, Amazon Photos offers unlimited photos at full resolution if you’re an Amazon Prime member. Anyone running out of storage on iCloud or Google Photos might want to consider it.


I wasn’t planning to renew my subscription to Microsoft Office 365 when it comes due at the end of the year. But now they’re offering new perks, such as a six-month membership in Uber One, the premium version of Uber. Uber One users get preferred pricing, premium support, and surprise perks. It’s something to consider.

Office 365 “Personal” edition is $70, but except for the new Uber offer, I don’t really need its other bonuses, such as ransomware protection for my files. I like the free Google “Docs,” instead of Word, “Sheets” instead of Excel and “Slides” instead of Powerpoint.


Here’s something new in Google. When you search for a product for sale, like a watch, a hammer or women’s dresses, the results scroll endlessly no matter how far you go. But if you search on a nonproduct, like the “theory of love” or “Hawaii,” you get the traditional list of results with page numbers at the bottom. I like the endless scrolling better. Otherwise, I rarely go past page one.


One of the easiest ways to get back pain, says HowToGeek, is to use a laptop on your lap. Put it on a table instead or elevate it. They suggest a stack of books.


If I say to Alexa, “Play rock ‘n’ roll music,” she starts with “Come Together” by the Beatles every single time, then continues down a familiar playlist. But if I say “play rock ‘n’ roll music” to Google, I get a different playlist every time from iHeart Radio, which is just one of my channel choices. You can change in the Google Home app by tapping “Settings” then “Music.” In the Alexa app, tap “link music services.”


• RiskFactor.com. Type an address at this site to see its risk of flooding, wildfires and extreme heat. I saw a lot more warnings for Florida and California than for other states.

• “Is UPS, FedEx or USPS cheapest?” Search on that phrase for the complete answer. The post office is far cheaper for light packages, but once you get up to 15 pounds, both UPS and FedEx are cheaper, unless you need a delivery in three days or less. If your package must arrive quickly, the post office’s priority mail is far less expensive, no matter what the weight.

• Time.gov. If you visit this site on a phone, computer, or tablet, it will tell you how far off your device’s clock is. My computer is half a second off. My phone is six-tenths of a second off. The site also shows a map of each time zone.


A car built by 35 undergraduate college students from the Netherlands cleans the atmosphere while you drive.

It’s called “ZEM,” which stands for Zero Emission Mobility. The prototype has carbon capture devices behind the front grill. According to Tuecomotive.nl, it collects about 4.5 pounds of carbon every 20,000 miles. That’s less than the amount that a mature tree captures about every three months, but the carbon can be reused for fuel. Fifteen percent of the electric car’s power comes from solar panels on the roof. The body of the car comes from recycled, reusable plastics. The interior is made from pineapples.

Joy Schwabach can be reached by email at joy.schwabach@gmail.com.

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