eCurrents | December 2009


Link to Advanced Technology, Personal Touch





Inside This Issue

Phony IRS E-mail Lands In Many Inboxes

3 Rivers' Voice Mail-Free For 2 Months!

Ask The Help Desk
Must Tweets Only Talk About What I'm Doing?

Sites Of The Month
Great Sites To Check Out In December

Short Tutorial
Uploading A Video On YouTube

Your Guide To Understanding The Internet



Welcome to eCurrents

The spotlight is on connections with family and friends in this December issue. You'll learn how to make the most of your tweets to them on Twitter, and get instructions on uploading videos to YouTube. In Great Sites, we feature resources to help you manage family finances, bake sweets with North Pole recipes, navigate the rules of etiquette, build a family medical record, and reminisce about the Sesame Street gang. Of course, there are foes online as well as family and friends. So we begin with a warning about phony IRS e-mails that attempt to steal personal information from recipients. Stay alert this season, and have a wonderful time with those you care about.

The goal of each of our monthly eNewsletters is to keep our subscribers informed regarding their Internet connection and to improve their Internet experience. We think you'll find this information interesting. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly basis, please see the links at the bottom of this e-mail to manage your preferences.

To see what's inside this issue, simply scroll down the eNewsletter or click on the links within the index to the left. Thanks for reading!

- The eCurrents Team


Warning! - Phony IRS E-mail Lands In Many Inboxes

IRS ImageAccording to, a phony e-mail claiming to come from the IRS has recently been circulating in large numbers. The subject line is typically “Notice of Underreported Income,” and the e-mail may contain an attachment or link to a bogus webpage directing taxpayers to their "tax statement." In either case, when the recipient opens the attachment or clicks on the link, they download malware including the hard-to-detect Zeus Trojan.

This malicious code can take over the hard drive, giving someone remote access to the computer, or it could look for passwords and other information and send them to the scammer to gain access to bank accounts. Researchers estimate that the Zeus criminals are emptying more than a million dollars per day out of victims' bank accounts with the software, and it's the most prominent spam-delivered virus in the world right now.

Please remember that the IRS does not send unsolicited e-mails to taxpayers about their tax accounts. If you receive an unsolicited e-mail claiming to come from the IRS, do not open any attachments or click on any links. Those who believe they may already be victims of identity theft should find out what to do by going to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission's website,


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Ask The Help Desk - Must Tweets Only Talk About What I'm Doing?

Twitter Birds ImageQuestion: The typing box at is labeled: "What are you doing?" Am I limited to answering that question in my tweets?

Answer: No, you are certainly not limited to answering the "What are you doing?" question on Twitter. (Especially if that results in tweets that contain just the mundane details of your everyday life, like the fact that you're now eating a bowl of cereal.) You can use those 140 characters for other things, and doing so often makes tweets more interesting and valuable to others. For example, you can pose questions to your followers such as, "What's got your attention and why?" or "What do you think about _______?" You can also send links to neat stuff you've found online, or spread the word about breaking news events.


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Sites Of The Month - Great Sites To Check Out In December

Money Made Easy - Is 2010 the year you'll finally start saving more? Reallocate your investments? Get out of debt? If your New Year's resolutions are financial in nature, some lessons in money management may be in order. Here you'll find Money 101 featuring 23 lessons from Setting Priorities to 401(k)s-all designed to help you make smarter financial decisions.

Christmas Cookbook - If you're not already in the Christmas spirit, cooking up some delicious holiday treats just might get you there. At this site, you can download recipes from Mrs. Claus herself! Recipes are available for cookies, fudge, candy, cakes, pies, and more. And, don't forget to check out other areas of the site to see Disco Dancing Santa, write Santa a letter, or track his travels on Christmas Eve.

Holiday Hiccups - A lot of holiday stress can be attributed to wondering about appropriate behavior: "Is it acceptable to bring an extra guest to dinner?" "How elaborate a gift should I give my new boyfriend/girlfriend?" "Should my tipping habits change during the holiday season?" The Emily Post Institute site offers gracious suggestions to address these and other tricky holiday situations.