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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in data protection

Every day we see customers who are shocked that their computer has a virus. They thought they had security software and they thought it was doing it's job.

But here's the thing....You get what you pay for...and YOU play a massive part in your computer's secuirty. You have to check before you click anything, you have to choose the right security, AND you have to know when it's time to renew your services. 

We recommend Norton Internet Security 2014 and it's avialable instore at PC Pitstop Port Macquarie for $85 installed.

If your computer is in for service and we notice your Norton is out of date we will update it at the same time for a reduced fee of $65.

Keep your PC and your Stuff safe with industry-leading protection.
Emailing, sharing files, visiting social networks, shopping online, or just browsing websites. Whatever you like to do on your PC, we help keep it—and the Stuff on it—safe from viruses, online threats, and problems that could slow down your computer.

Gets rid of viruses and spyware, so you can read emails and download and share files without getting or passing on threats, plus it helps prevent online identity theft and blocks websites that could steal your credit card numbers or other information. So you can surf, shop, and bank online worry-free.

BX NIS Y14 r r EN 342
Verdict

Norton's internet security suite offers excellent malware detection and consistently performs on pace with the best available security software.

Avoid the horror story happening to you. Don't get caught without. It could cost you more than you know.
 
 

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Why We Think Norton Internet Security is the Best Virus Protection for Everyday Users

We use and recommend the latest version of Norton Internet Security on a regular basis and it's the only virus protection software we sell instore.

Why?

If you're looking for a traditional security suite, with essential features like antivirus, firewall, antispam, parental control, and phishing protection, it's a great choice, and it's one of PC Mags Editors' Choice suites.

But wait, why should you pay for a security suite when modern Windows versions already include an antivirus and a firewall? Here's the deal. Yes, the built-in firewall does a good job hiding your computer from outside attack, but it doesn't exercise control over which programs can access your network the way third-party firewall components do.

If you're using internet banking on your computer...you need Norton Internet Security.

And, because this...

 

LOL.

Point made.

Get your Norton Internet Security software from PC Pitstop today and we'll even install it for you.

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PC Pitstop Computer Manual & Service Planner :: Making IT Easy for YOU

manual-planner

We are so excited to finally have our PC Pitstop Computer Manual & Service Planner in store for everyone who receives any service from PC Pitstop! So many of you have been wanting something like this and it will definately make life easier for a lot of businesses and families! We've been working on this handy guide for 12mths and it's jammed packed with over 30years experience in computer repairs, computer builds and everything in between.

It features an entire section dedicated to Customer Care Guides - 22 simple 'How-To' guides for navigating your computer, your devices and the internet. The Preventative Maintainence Schedule at the back of the booklet details exactly what service is recommended for your computer at various points in it's life and can even be stamp certified that you were looked after by a PC Pitstop Trained Technician.

We love providing extra value and this Manual is the perfect tech-education and tracking tool for all our customers!

Pick yours up after your next service today.

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Why You Would Need a Data Transfer or Recovery?

A Data Transfer may be necessary for a number of reasons.

PC Pitstop can transfer your data (documents, pictures, music) but not programs (software, downloads, etc). Your original installation media is required to install programs on another computer. PC Pitstop, by law, cannot install counterfeit software.

What types of transfer are there?

  1. Computer to computer – e.g. your computer failed and you’d like your information transferred onto a new computer.
  2. Computer to external hard drive – e.g. you are giving away an old computer and want the info off that computer for safe keeping.

If you request data transfer to an external drive you may have to follow correct steps to restore this information to a workable state on your computer if you choose to do so down the track, i.e. importing emails, address books, music, pictures and documents to their right location. (PC Pitstop also provides this service if required.)

Data Recovery is the process of retrieving your important files from faulty equipment. It may be necessary if you don’t have a working backup of your files. PC Pitstop provide a range of recovery solutions from small devices such as USB’s, computers and through to large Servers.

Things you should know about Data Recovery:

  1. Data recovery can take anywhere from one day to 2 weeks to complete depending on the severity and size.
  2. PC Pitstop can recover your information to another computer, to an external hard drive or other device of your choosing as long as the chosen device has the capacity and stability to handle the information.
  3. Once recovered your information may appear in an unfamiliar order. While every effort is taken to replicate the original file structure, in some cases this is simply not possible due to no prior knowledge of the original setup. We work in consultation with you to ensure this process is as smooth as possible.
  4. In some cases, the recovery process may need to be handled by a third party Forensic provider. PC Pitstop is in partnership with some of the best data recovery companies in the world. Please contact your nearest PC Pitstop for more information.
  5. Depending on the severity of the damaged device recovery may not even be an option.

Overall, Data Recovery should be seen as the last option because ultimately prevention far outweighs cure!

Small Office & Home
ACRONIS TRUE IMAGE BACKUP SOFTWARE
BUY ONLINE: www.pcpitstop.net.au

  •       Easy to use interface
  •       Scheduled automatic backups
  •       Peace of mind security

 

  •       Enterprise backup software
  •       Backup individual workstations
  •       Server backup

SMEs
NORTON BACKUP EXEC SOFTWARE
BUY ONLINE:www.pcpitstop.net.au

+ PC Pitstop Secure Online Backup – ASK US IN-STORE

 

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scary-tech-concerns


Security Scares & What They Should Remind You to Do


The Apple iOS 7.0.6 Secuirty Flaw

>>> READ ALL ABOUT IT <<<

What You Need to Do Now: Update your iPhone right now. (Or after you back it up!) Then be diligent about backing it up and keeping it updated.

 

Ransomware Computer Virus

>>> READ ALL ABOUT IT <<<

What You Need to Do Now: Get yourself an up to date version of Norton Internet Security from PC Pitstop; scan often and avoid illegal downloads and suspiscious links. Then Backup! Regularly.

 

Every Single Social Media Scares

>>> READ ALL ABOUT THEM <<<

What You Need to Do Now: Go and set your facebook, twitter, etc privacy settings to Max; don't share your passwords nor connect with people you don't know; and avoid apps that have even a whiff of dodgy! (I'm looking at you facebook games!)


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COMMON COMPUTER REPAIRS, PHONE REPAIRS & PRICES

PC Pitstop repair computers of all makes and models - laptops, desktops, MACs and all your small devices.
Get it done faster at PC Pitstop, simply call or pop in to your nearest store with your enquiries.

Tune Up/Clean Up $90+

Basic Virus Removal $90+ Data Recovery $90+
PC Pitstop will get your computer running back up to speed. Our removal process is thorough! No Bugs go unnoticed. Don't lose precious data with our 99% recovery success rate!
Workshop Assessment $59 Data Transfer $130+ Onsite Support $99+ p/hr

We locate the issues & determine the best way to fix them!

Transferring systems? Keep all your old files! We come to you! Great for home & business setups & more!
Workshop Assessment Data Transfer Onsite Support

 

iPhone iPod iPad SMART PHONE REPAIRS & PRICES

If its cracked, its dangerous! Those cracks contain microscopic shards of glass that once enter the skin are nearly impossible to get out. Stop using your cracked iPhone and get it fixed fast by PC Pitstop's Trained Technicians today!

iPhone 3G & 3GS Glass $90 iPhone 3G & 3GS LCD $90
   
iPhone 3G & 3GS Glass & LCD $130 iPhone 4 &4S Glass & Digitizer $179
   
iPhone 4 & 4S Colour Conversion $200 iPhone 5 Digitizer & LCD $250
   
iPod Touch 4th Gen $100 iPad 2,3,4 Digitizer Replacement $250
   
iPad 2,3,4 LCD & Digitizer $320 iPad Mini Digitizer Replacement $250
   
Samsung Galaxy S3 LCD & Digitizer $250 Samsung Galaxy S4 LCD & Digitizer
$350
We also repair iPads & others, please contact us to enquire about other iPod & other gadget repairs.

We also repair iPad screens!

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embracetch

PC Pitstop are simply the best in the business.  We stand behind our customers and our name...
...and this is YOUR PC Pitstop 5½ Point Guarantee to prove it....

 

1.    Unbelievable Service – You will be informed about your computer the same business day.  If you don’t hear from us on the same day, your service or repair is FREE and you will receive quarterly Tune-up services for FREE for the next 12 months.
2.    Virus Protection – If we cannot successfully remove a virus on your computer the first time, you will receive FREE Norton Internet Security software for a further 12 months AND you will receive quarterly Tune-up services for FREE for the next 12 months.
3.    Fix it or Double it – If you are informed that PC Pitstop can fix your computer and we can’t, you will receive a credit for DOUBLE the price we quoted, PLUS we will pay for a competitor of your choice to fix it.
4.    Risk Free Recovery – If you are informed your data can be recovered, and it isn’t, you will receive a credit for DOUBLE the price we quoted, PLUS a FREE 500GB External Hard Drive for your backup.
5.    Time is Your Biggest Asset – If PC Pitstop does not have your computer ready for you by the time we agreed, your service charge will be waived, your computer will be delivered to your home or office at no charge, AND you will receive quarterly tune ups for FREE for the next 12 months.
5 ½  Raving Referral – If PC Pitstop receives a referral from you and we don’t follow it up by the next business day, you will receive FREE quarterly Tune-up services for the next 12 months!

 

*Click HERE for full Terms and Conditions

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Today I thought I'd share an entire newsletter that arrived in my inbox.

Why?

Cause it's damn important.

CRYPTOLOCKER.

Remember the name.

Cryptolocker is new malware coming to a computer near you.

Malware is short for malicious software and generally refers to a variety of forms of intrusive and hostile programs.

Besides been informed, been super careful of what and where you're clicking, and sticking to 'safe' browsing habits, the best chance you've got of surviving Cryptolocker is to make TRIPLY sure you've got UP TO DATE BACKUPS.

Ben tells us all the time that you're not truly backed up unless you've backed up 3 times.

So just do it. No if's or buts after you read this article. BACKUP.

And if you don't know how to backup or if your backup solution is working, come and see us, and we'll get your sorted - ARMED - against the virus of all viruses!

PS. I included the whole newsletter from these guys coz they actually have included some other great info. Take a read....

Tip of the Day: Windows 8.1 integrates Bing into the standard, system-wide search experience. If you don't like this, you can disable it. To do so, open the Change PC Settings screen, select Search and apps, and disable the option under Use Bing to search online.

 

CryptoLocker Is The Nastiest Malware Ever & Here's What You Can Do

by Matthew Hughes

Ransomware is an especially odious type of malware. The way it works is simple. Your computer will be infected with some malicious software. That software then renders your computer entirely unusable, sometimes purporting to be from local law enforcement and accusing you of committing a computer crime or viewing explicit pictures of children. It then demands monetary payment, either in the form of a ransom or a "fine" before access to your computer is returned.

Horrible, isn't it? Well, get ready to meet CryptoLocker; the evil patriarch of the Ransomware family.

What Is CryptoLocker

CryptoLocker is a piece of malware targeting computers running the Microsoft Windows operating system. It is typically spread as an email attachment, often purporting to be from a legitimate source (including Intuit and Companies House). Some say it is also being spread through the ZeuS botnet.

Once installed on your computer, it systematically encrypts all documents that are stored on your local computer, as well as ones that are stored on mapped network drives and mounted removable storage.

cryptolocker-example

The encryption used is strong, 2048 bit RSA, with the decryption key for your files being stored on a remote server. The odds of you being able to break this encryption is almost nonexistent. If you want to get your files back, CryptoLocker asks for you to fork over some cash; either two bitcoins (At the time of writing, worth almost USD $380) or $300 in either MonkeyPak or Ukash prepaid cards. If you don't pay within three days, the decryption key is deleted and you lose access to your files forever.

I spoke to popular security expert and blogger Javvad Malik; this is what he had to say about CryptoLocker.

Ransomware such as CryptoLocker is not something very new - variations of Ransomware have been around for years. When you look at CryptoLocker, it predominantly comes in via phishing emails (from what I’ve seen). The best way to protect against it is for users to be vigilant against clicking on links within emails. Currently, it looks like there’s not much that can be done once infected and I wouldn’t advice anyone to pay the ransom. It goes back to having backups and data management in place.

Mitigating Against It

Reports suggest that some security programs have had a hard time of preventing CryptoLocker from getting its claws onto your system before it's too late. Fortunately, American security expert Nick Shaw has created a handy piece of software called CryptoPrevent (free) . This applies a number of settings to your installation of Windows that prevents CryptoLocker from ever executing and has been proven to work in Windows XP and Windows 7 environments.

It's also worth making sure that you check emails to see if they're suspect before you open up any email attachments. Do they have an email address that matches up with the purported sender? Were you expecting any correspondence from them? Is the spelling and grammar consistent with what you'd expect from the genuine sender? These are all reasons to be suspicious of an email and to think twice about poking in any attachments.

Having Proper Backup

In these circumstances, I'd encourage everyone to make regular backups that are isolated from your computer. Using a networked backup solution will be utterly ineffective, as CryptoLocker has been known to encrypt data stored on these volumes.

cryptolocker-backup

If you use a cloud backup service like Carbonite, you can take comfort in knowing the odds are good that your files are versioned. That means if you back up an encrypted copy of a file you care about, you can revert to an earlier version. An employee of Carbonite posted this advice on Reddit.

I work for Carbonite on the operations team, and I can confirm this for most cases – I will also offer these two pieces of advice:

1) If you are affected by the virus, you should disable or uninstall Carbonite as soon as possible. If you stop backing up the files, it’s more likely that Carbonite will not have overwritten a “last known good” backup set. There is a high risk of some recent data loss (you’re effectively going back in time, so if we have no record of the file existing at a previous time, you won’t get it back) with this method, but it’s far, far better than losing all of your files.

2) When you call customer support, which you should do as soon as possible, specifically mention that you are infected with cryptolocker. It was mentioned in the post above, but I just wanted to put emphasis on it because it’ll get you through the queue faster.

Edit: also, just to state the obvious, make doubly sure the infection is off your machine before you call support, please.

Should You Pay The Ransom?

What if your computer gets compromised? It goes without saying that brute forcing a file encrypted with 2048 bit encryption is almost impossible. Noted computer security firm Sophos has looked at a number of files that have been encrypted by this particular malware and has failed to notice any obvious means in which they can be decrypted without forking over a ransom.

With that in mind, the only way to get your data back is by paying the ransom. However, this poses a major ethical dilemma. By paying the ransom, you make this type of chicanery profitable and therefore perpetuate it. However, if you don't pay the ransom, you forever lose access to everything you've been working on which is stored on your computer.

What further complicates things is that it is impossible to ascertain who would be the recipient of any money paid. It may something so simple as a single person working from his bedroom looking to get rich at the expense at others, or it might be something much more sinister.

Conclusion

I'll leave the floor to you, the reader. Would you pay the ransom? Have you been infected with CryptoLocker? Leave your thoughts in the comments box below.

   

 

 

 

 

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alltasksIT is our special guest blogger today, with an article that will interest and benefit a lot of forgetful and security conscious households and businesses!

pcpitstop-blog-forgotten-passwords


5 Useful Apps to Help You Remember Your Passwords

Try to count how many different passwords you have. Or more importantly, what these passwords are. Bet you can’t.

If you have a computer or a smart phone, an email address, use online banking or just use the internet for shopping or any other services, you’re bound to have a number of different usernames and passwords. And writing them all down on a piece of paper is not a very smart thing to do.

Although forgetting a password isn’t the end of the world, it is time-consuming and just plain annoying having to click on that ‘have you forgotten your password?’ link and open your email and reset it. (Not to mention the hassle of having to manually type in your username and password every time.) Plus that means there will be one more password floating around in the back of your head.

Luckily there are safe ways to manage your passwords, for example by using one of the following programs:

1.1Password

The name says it all; you only have to remember one master password. 1Password remembers all of your website passwords through a web browser plugin that can log into your favourite sites using only the password you choose for the program. It also keeps track of your passport numbers, medical information, frequent flier numbers, and credit cards. For extra secure data you can add another password – why not use the password generator for this? By linking to Dropbox you can keep 1Password in sync with all your devices.

2. RoboForm

This password manager automatically saves and then enters your username and password. Use the ‘Identities’ feature to securely store your name, email, credit cards etc. and entire web forms will be filled out automatically. You can access your RoboForm logins on all your computers and devices. The program also allows for multiple profiles, which is handy for families and households.

3. LastPass

This program logs into your websites with one click, synchronises across devices, browsers and computers, automatically fills out web forms, encrypts your sensitive data and securely stores any text data you want to keep safe. The premium version gives you even more features, such as the option to import and export data, identify weak passwords and a password generator.

4. PasswordBox

This password manager has a built-in system that takes new users through the features by completing tasks. It smoothly enters login details (for most sites) and offers randomly generated passwords. This app doesn’t fill out forms automatically, but it has a unique feature called ’Password Legacy’ that transfers credentials after your death. Managing up to 25 passwords is free, and if you refer five friends you’ll get a lifetime license.

5. mSecure

As the name suggests, this app is ultra secure as your password is not saved anywhere in the software and there is an auto-lock feature. You can store as many types of passwords as you wish (19 default types), such as website passwords, email logins, bank account and credit card details as well as personal data such as birthdays. What mSecure doesn’t do is to automatically capture and replay your secure site login on the desktop version. Instead you have to enter the URL, username and password manually. You can keep your data in sync via iCloud, Dropbox or Wi-Fi.

There are free and paid versions for the password managers mentioned and all work across devices, browsers and the most common operating systems. There are many more programs out there that will keep your passwords safe and make your life easier, so whatever your criteria is you’re bound to find a program you like.

Author Bio: alltasksIT is an established IT company based in Melbourne that can help you save money by offering secure and stress-free IT support.

Was this article useful? Let us know in the comment space below!

 


*Comments moderated for spam so your comment may not appear for 24-48hrs!

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[TIME FOR A CHECKUP]

Dust and debris in your computer can cause overheating...which can fry parts...which can result in lost precious data, to name one tech crisis!

pcpitstop dirtydesktop before after

WHAT DO WE DO TO MAKE YOUR COMPUTER FASTER, SAFER AND CLEANER?

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Workshop Assessment & Diagnosis

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Hard Drive Surface Testing

ü  Arrow-Right-icon File System Integrity Testing

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Malware Scan & Removal

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Optimization of Startup Processes

ü  Arrow-Right-icon System Defrag

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Apply Critical System Updates

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Hard Drive Speed Test

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Bench Testing

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Physical External Computer Clean with Antibacterial Cleaner

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Physical Internal Computer Clean with Compressed Air

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Final Startup Check

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Discuss Any Recommendations

ü  Arrow-Right-icon Supply Future Maintenance Information

Home Users need to get a computer Tune-up at least every 12months while Business Users need to get a Tuneup at least every 6months to keep their equipment in top working order and to avoid a technology crisis!

When was the last time your computer had a checkup?

Get into PC Pitstop today.

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Posted by on in Services
ben pcpitstop technician 

BEN WATERS
Engineer & Managing Director

Winning Work: Onsite business consultations and tech needs analysis to increase productivity for everyone within the business.

Best Tech Tip: "You haven't really backed up until you've backed up 3 times. Let us set it and then you forget it."

 tristan pcpitstop technician

TRISTAN PIPER
Sales Manager

Winning Work: iPhone/iPod/iPad repairs.

Best Tech Tip: "Ask the experts. No question is a silly question except for those not asked. Ask before action sometimes saves so much stress and mess!"
 james pcpitstop technician 640x613

BEN 'JAMES' STELZER
Technical Specialist

Winning Work: Mac's and new technologies.

Best Tech Tip: "Invest in the very best quality products - hardware, software, peripherals, the works - for YOUR specific needs. The big department stores' hype is not always right."
 josh

JOSH SKINNER
Technical Specialist

Winning Work: Ongoing maintenace, backups and business support.

Best Tech Tip: "Keep it simple. We can help you find one great solution for each issue instead of lots of less than average solutions all battling each other."

Got a computer problem or burning question....?

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TRUST THE CLOUD. TRUST PC PITSTOP SECURE ONLINE BACKUP.

Your data is precious. We live in the digital age where everything is stored electronically. But what happens when disaster strikes and you no longer have access to your important files?

BENEFITS

• Keep backups offsite in a secure remote location
• Restore backups anytime from any place where you have an internet connection
• Schedule your backups for a time that suits you
• Backup every changed or new file immediately with Continuous Data Protection
• Protect backups by encrypting your data before it leaves your computer
• Compress backups to reduce the size of required online storage.


By keeping our overheads low we can happily pass on the savings to you.

Choose from a monthly direct debit or yearly invoicing for easy payment processing.

PC Pitstop Secure Online Backup couldn’t be easier!

Storage Prices

Call Ben and the Team now to get your data storage sorted! (02) 65 841 551

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Posted by on in Blog
  • Make sure your computer is located in a safe, dry and dust-free area preferably away from open windows. Responsible computer owners place their work stations in low-traffic, climate controlled areas which prevent physical damage and heat related issues.
  • Back up your data regularly to an external hard drive. (How? Click here.) Recent studies conclude that only 12% of the population backs up their data on a weekly basis.
  • Prevent power surges from destroying your computer because even low-level power bursts or 'brown-outs' can erase hard drive data. An Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) provides some of the best protection from data hard drive recovery situations. So use a UPS on your computer but be sure to test it.
  • Beware of losing data with email attachments. Set your email program to save attachments in a unique location so you don't overwrite something of the same name.
  • It doesn't hurt to keep hard copies of your documents: It won't prevent you from typing and formatting your document again, but it's certainly better than nothing. Be sure to do this in association with an external backup though!
  • Store copies of mission critical data off site by utilising a portable external HDD, DVD, or USB stick.
  • Use virus detection programs and keep them updated frequently as viruses can be deadly to data. We use and recommend Norton Internet Security.
  • If your disk drive makes any strange noises, skips a beat, hiccups or does anything out of the ordinary then backup it up immediately and bring your machine in to PC Pitstop. Everyone will have a hard drive failure at some point in time but been aware of warning signs can help avoid data loss.

Virus RemovalSystem TuneupExt hdd

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Data Recovery

pc pitstop Data Recovery
With our 99% success rate, you can stress less!

When a computer refuses to start up, corrupted files are often the culprit. Think of this as having lost the combination to a safe - the valuables are still intact but you can't get to them.

PC Pitstop has specialised machines that recover your lost data, reset that combination and restore access.

Ontrack Data Recovery

Ontrack Data Recovery

We are agents for Ontrack Data Recovery - a worldwide data recovery company that is the best in the business. They can recover your data from physical damage e.g fire, flood, shock & mechanical failure, as well as accidental deletion or complete format/wipe.

When directed by your technician please submit the completed form by clicking here. If you prefer to speak to a Recovery specialist, call Ontrack:1800 872 259, quoting 3177871  to benefit from special pricing.
ontrack


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What are Bad Sectors?

sectors
Sectors are the areas your pictures, data and programs are stored on your Hard Drive.

This Hard Drive has 18492 Bad Sectors. It usually takes only 100 Bad Sectors to render your Hard Drive useless.
This Hard Drive was sent to Ontrack Data Recovery where they were able to gain access to the MYOB files, saving weeks of manual labour.

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