Banks and Hacked itunes Account

Just the other day I had a call from one of our long-term clients, who had had an issue with her iTunes account and some unauthorised access on one of her Apple products.

The banks should stick to banking and leave the technology to those that know.

The banks should stick to banking and leave the technology to those that know.

Without going into too much detail, this resulted in the closure of the aforementioned Apple iTunes account (and any related accounts), and a brief conversation with her banks – this is where the ‘fun’ started.

The bank in question won’t be named but it is a recognised high street brand that you yourself may indeed bank with. (6)

Once the bank were informed of the compromised account details they simply refused to help unless certain ‘security checks’ were carried out. 🙄

This it seems amounted to installing ‘Panda Antivirus’ software and performing an online scan from the Kaspersky website – both of which would never have had no effect on the results of the compromised account (perform an antivirus scan after a hacking?!) and furthermore, could have harmed the stability and data on the PC.

It really annoyed me though that the bank refused to help, and proceeded to carry out pointless software installations and scans of which they have no idea of the potential impact of their actions.
You see the PC had already had the Eset Smart Security package installed, and it was not this PC that had been hacked. The account was compromised from an Apple device, not this PC. The fact that this PC also had the iTunes account on, meant that the bank got all uppity about security and refused to help unless their procedure was carried out.

I had visions of some junior geek on the helpline thinking “I know, just for fun lets carry out some random scans with ‘free’ software and see if it makes any difference. They will never know!!”
Pointless and potentially dangerous – had the client been using the McAfee range of products, or one of several other packages out there, the conflict of softwares would have meant the client meeting the dreaded ‘Blue Screen of Death’ (BSOD) aka a ‘Stop error’. Basically the PC is broken and needs a technician’s loving touch.

Luckily the Eset packages play nice with other software usually, so this didn’t happen. 😀

Message to the banks: You should stick to what you [think you…] do best – banking (although the cynic in me thinks that they don’t even do that terribly well at the moment!). :yell:

Metro Last Light Review

Metor Last Light By THQ

Metro: Last Light
By THQ

Another romp in the Russian Underground system Metro: Last Light – but the question is “is it any good?”

Plot

It’s time to grab your improvised gun, your gas mask and your flashlight and get attacked by all and sundry…

From the box

It is the year 2034.

Beneath the ruins of post-apocalyptic Moscow, in the tunnels of the Metro, the remnants of mankind are besieged by deadly threats from outside – and within.

Mutants stalk the catacombs beneath the desolate surface, and hunt amidst the poisoned skies above.

But rather than stand united, the station-cities of the Metro are locked in a struggle for the ultimate power, a doomsday device from the military vaults of D6. A civil war is stirring that could wipe humanity from the face of the earth forever.

As Artyom, burdened by guilt but driven by hope, you hold the key to our survival – the last light in our darkest hour…

Gameplay

I actually found myself losing my usual, completionist attitude of going everywhere and finding everything.
Carrying on from it’s predecessors ending – where you launched missiles at the ‘Dark Ones’ nests, It’s the usual gun-play in this First Person Shooter, but with some great stealth elements.

The Rangers, who you have now joined, have settled in an underground bunker known as D6 where a mysterious shaman type character tells you that a single Dark One survived the missile strike and it’s up to you to make peace with it as he believes it’s the key to the future; your leader, Colonel Millar, decides that it’s better dead though and sends you out – along with a rather smart-mouthed female sniper to kill it.

You pretty much know where this is going from here; weapons, upgrades, darkness, bad guys and monsters and the like, mean you get to shoot stuff, in an almost linear fashion.

Review

For me this was a time filler until something better crops up, and it never felt like anything new was introduced.

The linear nature of the gameplay was a huge detriment to me. I actually found myself losing my usual, completionist attitude of going everywhere and finding everything. Something unusual in my gaming; I just wanted to see where the story was going, and there were environments, enemies and stuff in the way.

The graphics in the game are very good though, and do give a great view of post apocalyptic Russia after the bomb fell. Venturing outside has you walking through decimated parks, and cityscapes, all rich in detail and well crafted destruction.

There was also much talk of the improved AI (Artificial Intelligence), though I personally thought it wasn’t that good – having a silenced weapon, and picking off the bad guys from darkened corners was all too easy, I’m sorry to say. Even on the higher difficulty I found it not too challenging.

Quite a few times I found the monsters just looking at me, awaiting the inevitable head-shot.

It is however still quite a fun romp through the Metro system; and if you can look past its flaws, I’d certainly give it a go.

Overall I’d give it a 6/10

Merkur 34C Double Edge Razor

After shaving for well over 20 years with a variety of cartridge razors, I finally decided that it was time to do it properly and shave like it’s 1880. :-S

Merkur-36c Double Edged Razor

Merkur-34c Double Edged Razor

So, after spending an inordinate amount of time looking into the ‘art’ of shaving I took the proverbial plunge and purchased this little beauty – the Merkur 34c Double Edged Safety Razor.

Created by Merkur, a well-respected name in the shaving world, this is a fairly heavy, simple razor in which the unscrewing of the knurled bottom (the bit at the top right of the image) means the entire top bit slides up (the smooth bit bottom left). revealing a couple of lumps, over which the razor blade itself fits.

Thus your weapon will be primed for the ‘pleasure’ of peeling your face. :paint:

The razor itself was surprisingly smaller that I thought it would be, and heavier too. Two points in its favour as I would come to realise as I get better at using it, it’s highly agile and you really don’t have to press at all to get a good shave. The textured surfaces on the handle also help with gripping it when it gets wet, so dropping it doesn’t seem to be an issue.

Now personally at this point I decided against the advice of the masses, and plumped for some shaving cream from a can – specifically the Nivea For Men Sensitive Shave Gel, as I knew that this stuff didn’t irritate my face and produces quite a nice lather (something which is insisted on by ‘shaving gurus’ apparently). Read below – I have something better now!

Trepidation built as I warmed my beard, lathered my face and employed some of the techniques I had learned from the numerous YouTube videos of men shaving.

What a revelation!

If it helps – and this coming from a cheap Yorkshireman – it will also save you £££s as the blades and accompanying paraphernalia are considerably cheaper than those stupidly prices cartridges I used to use.
Although I took my time for the first shave (several passes in varying directions), I was amazed by the overall quality of the shave. For the first time ever, I managed to get a clean, ‘Babies Bum’ smooth shave. I only cut myself a few times, so I guess my technique needs some work… 😳

And after applying some of the King of Shaves SuperSkin Hydration Moisturiser, I was off to face the world. I can’t believe I’ve turned into a man who moisturises! 😯

I really am impressed by this little gem. It’s overall size is small and compact, but the results it gives are simply amazing. Apparently you can get better results by testing a few other blades with this, but I have yet to try any, something I will be correcting in the upcoming weeks.

Shaving has now become something to enjoy and take pleasure from (except the bleeding part), taking time over something as simple as a shave is not something I have ever done, but now I really do enjoy taking my time and shaving the old chin.

#Update#

I recently added to my shaving kit with The Bluebeards Revenge White Shaving Cream and Badger Brush Gift Set, as my first foray into the brush technique – this only made things better, though the freebie aftershave balm stuff is not as good as the King of Shaves moisturiser, the cream and brush make you beard stick out. All the easier to shave! 😎

My advice – get something like this razor, a reasonable shaving brush (The Bluebeards Revenge do a reasonable one for a reasonable price), a variety pack of blades, a cream you can trust and YouTube for the technique and I hope you’ll be as impressed as I was.