PlumChoice Arms Consumers with Ways to Prevent Tech Help from "Helping Themselves" to Your Personal Files and More

BILLERICA, Mass., August 7, 2007 — In light of recent reports about customers' personal files being copied during computer support sessions, PlumChoice (www.plumchoice.com), the nation's leader in remote PC services, offers consumers some simple steps for ensuring the privacy and safety of their personal information when engaging tech help.

Step One: Keep Control. First and foremost, consumers should look to engage a remote services firm whenever possible. Remote support technicians will service your computer over the Internet – all while you watch – and the consumer never has to relinquish control, keeping the ability at all times to terminate the session with the click of their mouse. What's more, the more trusted remote providers will record the entire session (down to the keystroke) and be able to play back the service session if any questions arise. This type of service protects both the consumer and the technician from any misunderstandings or misconduct.

Step Two: Clear your Web Browser. Web Browsers record the websites you visit, files you have downloaded, and passwords and usernames you use to access online stores. If you ever have to drop your computer off for service, remember to clear out your browser cookies, history, and cache files before hand. You don't want someone shopping on your J.Crew account because you have your username and password set to automatically log into the site.

Step Three: Change your Password. Change your password before you let anyone touch your system. Many of us use the same password for everything, giving this to someone, gives them access to everything. When the service is complete, be sure to change your password back.

Step Four: Limit What You Drop Off — Both the Virtual and the Physical. Remove anything that doesn't pertain to the specific issue at-hand. Don't leave your personal CDs, games or USB sticks in the computer. In most cases, all the technician needs is the computer and any affected accessory. Leave everything else at home, otherwise you open yourself up to others viewing your photos, documents, etc.

And when dropping your computer off, make a list of what materials are with the computer and ask the service provider to sign it. If the power-cord, mouse or another device is in your laptop bag, be sure that they're there when you get it back. Without a list you may be "powerless".

Step Five: Mark Private Files Off Limits. If you don't want someone to see a video of your family on your vacation, be sure to password protect it, especially if you are dropping it off at a store.

Step Six: Keep Your Tech Service Accountable. Protect yourself and your data by asking the tech support company how they monitor the service they provide. Whether in-store, over the phone, in-home or remotely, effective oversight is the best remedy for misconduct. Review the company policy in this area before entrusting your computer with anyone. Good questions to ask include:

  • Does the company record their service calls?
  • Does the company record the actual service session?
  • Does the company conduct background checks on its employees?
  • Do its technicians have one of the following certifications: Microsoft MCSE, MCP, CCNE, CCNA, Comp TIA A+
  • What is the company's process for reporting a problem?
  • Is the company a member of the Better Business Bureau?
PlumChoice provides small businesses and consumers with around-the-clock, high-touch technical support delivered right through the Internet. Its mission is to help people with all of their personal and professional technology needs, including set up, training and ongoing technology maintenance and repair on everything from laptops and desktops to networks, printers and PDAs – all of the technology small business professionals need to keep their businesses up and running.

PlumChoice Contact:
Karen McPhillips, Vice President, Marketing
kmcphillips@plumchoice.com
866.811.3321 x3204

Press Contact:
Belinda Rooney
SSPR, for PlumChoice
pr@plumchoice.com
866-811-3321

The press release contains forward-looking statements regarding anticipated objectives, growth and/or expected product and service developments or enhancements. Such forward-looking statements may be identified by the use of the following words (among others): "believes," "expects," "may," "will," "plan," "should" or "anticipates," or comparable words and their negatives. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees but are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations contained in these statements. PlumChoice assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this press release in the event of changing circumstances or otherwise, and such statements are current only as of the date they are made.