Alert – Upgrade Scams via Email

alert

We received a message from one of our faithful readers and members concerning emails about upgrading versions of software.  This is important information for all members of GeneaBloggers to understand!

Issue

You might receive emails asking you to click a link to upgrade your copy of Adobe Reader or Skype. Those links actually take you to other 3rd party sites asking you to purchase

  • Action Required : Upgrade New Adobe Acrobat Reader 2011 For Windows and Mac
    Go to http://www.adobe-2011-download.org
  • Download New Skype Software For Your Windows And Mac
    www.official-skype-2011.org

I have purposely omitted the links above. Using these URLs will take you to websites that even use the same colors as the authentic websites to try and trick the unsuspecting into using their links for downloads. The Skype imposter actually offers this disclaimer in very tiny print at the bottom of their site:

Disclaimer: This website has no affiliation whatsoever with the owner of this software program and does not re-sell or license software. All software is freeware and/or shareware with the understanding that the user may need or want to pay for it later. Membership is for unlimited access to our site’s resources. We provide an organized website with links to third party freeware and shareware software, technical support, tutorials and step by step guides.

Solution

As I teach in my Facebook classes and in fact all my classes: never click a link in an email.  Period. If it is true, go to the site, such as Facebook and you’ll see a notification for a new friend, or a new event etc.

Same is true for updates to legitimate software you’ve already installed! Open the program and if in doubt, go to the Help menu.  Very often there will be an upgrade option and you can verify if you have the correct version of the software.

Conclusion

‘Tis the season to rip off the unwary consumer.  Remember December is the month when many of these companies employ desperate and questionable practices to pad their bottom line by selling unnecessary programs by the end of their fiscal year. Don’t fall prey to their tactics.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

MyHeritage Releases Family Builder 5.0

MyHeritage

[Editor's note: we just received this press release from MyHeritage for version 5.0 of their free Family Builder software. ]

MyHeritage.com Brings Family History to the Masses with Free Family Builder 5.0

London, England & Tel Aviv, IsraelDecember 1, 2010MyHeritage.com, the largest family network on the web, today announced the launch of Family Tree Builder 5.0, the most advanced and easy-to-use free genealogy software in the world. Introducing a range of new practical features, Family Tree Builder 5.0 makes researching, building, printing and sharing family trees easier than ever. The new ‘To-Do’ lists and unique ‘Tree Consistency Checker’ are amongst the useful new tools for genealogists, while the new fully customizable family tree charts and professional poster prints provide a colorful way for any family to showcase its past and present. With improved privacy settings, Family Tree Builder 5.0 also gives users more flexibility and security for sharing family history data.

Family history enthusiasts and genealogists around the world use Family Tree Builder to find long-lost relatives, and discover and showcase their family roots. Popular free features, such as Smart Matches™ and Facial Recognition, empower users to overcome the challenges of family history research in a fun and innovative way. Family Tree Builder users can synchronize their data with a private online family site on MyHeritage.com. Family sites serve as an ideal platform for families to share their heritage and stay in touch – through photo sharing, event planning and other social networking tools.

“We’re witnessing a massive upward trend in people being passionate to discover their roots”, said Gilad Japhet, Founder and CEO of MyHeritage.com. “Our newly released Family Tree Builder 5.0 software is the ideal companion in the journey to explore your family’s past. Easy-to-use, packed with innovative features and completely free, it transforms family history into a hobby that is accessible and enjoyable for everyone.”

Family Tree Builder

The new Family Tree Builder 5.0, free to download at www.myheritage.com/family-tree-builder, offers several new ways of organizing, documenting and showcasing family history. The major new features include:

  • ‘To-Do’ Lists: A new feature that makes organizing and conducting research much more effective. Users can enter tasks that need to be done and associate them with people and locations, and organize the next steps they need to do in their research and prioritize them. Offers the ability to find all tasks associated with a certain person or location.
  • Tree Consistency Checker: A unique and free tool that helps find mistakes in family tree data, automatically identifying errors and inconsistencies in 40 categories. The tool excels in detecting anomalies – for example if users have entered dates inside place fields or tagged someone in a photo before that person’s birth – and shows users exactly how to fix them.
  • Improved Privacy Settings: A centralized place for controlling privacy settings. Users can now make specific information (e.g., names, facts and notes) of family members private and prevent this data from being published to family sites, or exclude it from family tree charts.
  • New Family Tree Charts: In only a few clicks, users can create beautiful family tree charts for free using a new easy-to-use chart wizard. With a dozen different chart types to choose from (click here to view), 18 predefined chart styles (click here to view), plus a wide variety of border designs, frames, background images, decorations, colours and fonts, users  now enjoy thousands of combinations for personalizing their family tree charts. Charts can be saved in PDF format, which makes them easy to print at home and to share with others.
  • Family Tree Posters: With worldwide shipping, users can now order a poster sized version of any family tree chart, either direct to their home or sent as a gift to a family member. Prices start from as little as $20.
  • Custom Reports: Users can copy and export to excel data specific to a particular research project (such as a wedding or trip), sorting information according to their needs – e.g. by region, emails of particular individuals, information on reunion attendees etc.
  • DNA markers: Users can enter results from a genealogy DNA test or be directed to over 10 companies that conduct such tests. This information is encrypted.
  • Plus dozens of additional enhancements.

About MyHeritage.com

MyHeritage.com is the most popular family network on the web. Millions of families around the world enjoy having a private place for their families to keep in touch. MyHeritage.com’s Smart-Matching technology empowers users with an exciting and innovative way to find relatives and explore their family history. With all family information stored in a secure site, MyHeritage.com is the ideal place to share family photos, and celebrate and preserve special family moments. Offering 36 languages, 650 million profiles and 16 million family trees, MyHeritage.com is nurturing family relationships and uniting families worldwide. For more information please visit www.myheritage.com or www.myheritage.com/family-tree-builder.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

MyHeritage.com Unveils Stunning Online Family Tree Charts

MyHeritage

[Editor's Note: we just received this press release from MyHeritage about their new family tree charts. It looks like there are some exciting formats that will allow you to share your research with family and friends!]

MyHeritage.com Unveils Stunning Online Family Tree Charts

Launches world’s largest online source for creating, printing and sharing family tree charts

London, England & Tel Aviv, IsraelNovember 18, 2010MyHeritage.com, the largest and fastest growing family network on the web, unveiled today a host of new online family tree chart designs and features. As the leading online source for family tree charts, with over 7,000 of them created every day by its users, MyHeritage.com has now completely revamped its offering to enable free customization, printing and sharing of beautiful family tree charts. Going one step further in enabling users to showcase their family history, MyHeritage.com launched today a professional poster printing service for any chart produced on the website, and added a new department specializing in the production of custom-tailored handmade family tree charts.

MyHeritage Charts

More than 16 million families have created a site on MyHeritage.com; a private place for exploring family history, finding long-lost relatives and keeping in touch. Innovative tools, such as Smart Matching™ and photo sharing with facial recognition technology, provide a friendly and secure setting where millions of users have planted their family tree online.

Users can now create a family tree chart from their family site in a few clicks, by choosing from numerous different chart types (click here to view), including the newly introduced Bowtie and Hourglass formats. The Hourglass chart shows the ancestors and descendants of a selected individual, in as many generations as desired. MyHeritage.com has further innovated on this format: its Hourglass charts can optionally include the ancestors of any spouse as well. The new Bowtie format showcases an immediate family with the ancestors of the two partners on either side.

With a choice of 18 different predefined chart styles (click here to view), plus a wide variety of border designs, frames, background images, decorations, colors and fonts, users enjoy thousands of combinations for personalizing their family tree charts. Users can further customize their chart by choosing which information they wish to include in their family chart – from names, birthdates or wedding anniversaries – through personal photos and personal notes – to entire biographical data on family members.

MyHeritage.com offers high resolution export of charts completely free of charge, to enable sharing with other family members and friends. Users can generate all charts in PDF format, which is compatible with every home printer and enables easy sharing as an email attachment.

As of today, MyHeritage.com adds a professional poster printing service for any chart produced on the website, starting as low as $20 per poster. With worldwide shipping, any user can now order a high quality printout of their chart packaged in a protective tube, either directly to their home or shipped as a gift to any other address. The print can be ordered on a variety of paper types (including standard paper, matt photo, glossy photo, vinyl and canvas), in almost any size and with optional lamination. For special occasions like family reunions, posters can be as large as an entire wall.

In addition to the automatically generated charts and posters, MyHeritage.com is launching today exclusive handmade charts (click here to view). These special charts, each a unique creation, make an ideal present for a family reunion, anniversary or other special occasion, and are also an heirloom for future generations. A dedicated team at MyHeritage.com has been set up to prepare these impressive custom-made family tree charts in direct consultation with the customer, to ensure they are tailored according to the individual’s needs and taste.

“Our beautiful family tree charts are a great reward for families who have spent many hours researching their roots”, said MyHeritage.com Founder and CEO, Gilad Japhet. “Family history is much more fun when you can share what you’ve discovered with others, and family tree charts are perfect for that. We’re proud to raise the bar and provide the widest choice of customizable family tree charts on the web – that can easily be shared with others for free. Our attractive new family tree posters will be a source of pride in every home and are perfect as a gift for the upcoming holidays”.

Existing users of MyHeritage.com can create their own family tree charts by simply clicking on the ‘family tree’ tab on their family site and choosing ‘charts and books’. People who have already built a family tree elsewhere can easily import their family tree onto MyHeritage.com and take advantage of the beautiful chart options, by signing up for free on www.myheritage.com and uploading a GEDCOM file.

About MyHeritage.com

MyHeritage.com is the most popular family network on the web. Millions of families around the world enjoy having a private place for their families to keep in touch. MyHeritage.com’s Smart-Matching technology empowers users with an exciting and innovative way to find relatives and explore their family history. With all family information stored in a secure site, MyHeritage.com is the ideal place to share family photos, and celebrate and preserve special family moments. Offering 36 languages, 650 million profiles and 16 million family trees, MyHeritage.com is nurturing family relationships and uniting families worldwide. For more information please visit www.myheritage.com.

Disclosure: please see Disclosure Statements for more information on my material connection with MyHeritage.com and other genealogy vendors.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee