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sunrise: 7:10 am
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‘Flubot’ – New Text Scam In Circulation.

Vodafone are warning Irish customers of a dangerous new sophisticated scam text, which has begun circulating called ‘Flubot’.

Currently this scam only affects Android users, however it is believed that same could also soon affect Apple users.

This Flubot SMS (short message service), is now circulating in Ireland and customers are being asked to take the following actions should they receive same SMS from a company they do not recognise, regarding the tracking of a package.

(1) IGNORE: Do not click on any link included in the message.

(2) DELETE: Remove the full SMS from your phone immediately.

While the scam will primarily affect Android users, Vodafone encourage users of all handsets to be cautious when receiving such any SMS, particularly when you are not expecting a delivery or a contact from a courier.

The National Cyber Security Centre have expanded on these new tactics being employed by fraudsters.
Quote, “Such messages typically contain a link for the victim to click on to get details of a missed package delivery. This link will direct the victim to a fake website replicating the legitimate delivery company’s site. The victim will then be asked to download two .apk files which are banking trojans. Users will then be prompted to manually override and allow an untrusted app download.”

[Trojan: A trojan, is a type of malicious code or software that looks legitimate is designed to damage, disrupt, steal, or in general inflict harmful action on your data or network.]

[APK file: An APK file is an app created for Android, Google’s mobile operating system. Some apps come pre-installed on Android devices, while other apps can be downloaded from Google Play.]

We are aware here in Thurles of individuals receiving similar type SMS messages as shown hereunder.

Type of SMS received within Thurles area.

This warning comes as Gardaí continuously warn the public to be alert for any suspicious texts, scam calls or information forms received online.

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Top 5 Family Favourite Easter Movies.

Movie night has become a family favourite in Co. Tipperary homes throughout lockdown and thanks to online streaming services we can now access thousands of movies in seconds.

It wasn’t always like that. Those of us that remember the 1980s will recall having to rent a VHS player from the old “Movie Club” video rental shop on Kickham Street , here in Thurles, to watch a movie on a big black VHS cassette. Not only that, but many’s the time you had to wait weeks for your turn to rent your favourite movie because the shop only had a limited number of copies.

How times have changed? As of August 2020, it was estimated that 550,000 Irish people were subscribed to Netflix alone, with thousands also subscribed to Disney+ and Amazon Prime.

There’s no doubt, but watching your favourite movie has never been so easy. Given the time of year it is; here are 5 family movie favourites perfect for the Easter holidays. Some are around so long a few of our readers might even have rented them from that old “Movie Club” video shop back in the day!

  • Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, (1971, rated U) available to stream on Netflix.
  • Peter Rabbit, (2012, rated U) available to stream on Netflix.
  • Alice in Wonderland, (1951, rated 0+) available to stream on Disney+.
  • Ice Age: The Great Egg-Scapade, (2016, rated 0+) available to stream on Disney+.
  • Hop, (2011, rated All) available to stream on Amazon Prime
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Helpful Resources For Return to Remote Learning.

RTÉ’s Home School Hub: A Resource that requires no Broadband.

One of the biggest challenges to remote schooling, faced by teachers and pupils alike, is poor access to broadband or lack of affordability.

Schools have received funding for IT equipment and digital platforms, but without adequate broadband, pupils and teachers can do nothing online and very little with their digital devices.

Minister for Education (Irish: An tAire Oideachais) Ms Norma Foley has repeatedly praised her department’s guidance and funding for IT and remote learning, but many teachers would argue that she is ignoring the blatantly obvious, namely, that remote teaching amounts to little, if you cannot access fast and reliable broadband.

Remote teaching has indeed highlighted how much remains to be done to improve broadband infrastructure in this country. It is, to say the least, regrettable that since lockdown and school closure became the new norm, that little has been done to improve the provision of broadband and internet access for our children, young people and their teachers.

If you are a family or teacher with limited access to the internet, then RTÉ’s Home School Hub is the resource you need. Home School Hub aims to help keep everyone busy and engaged with learning over this current lockdown.

It will air every weekday, for two hours from 10:00am on RTÉ2, starting tomorrow morning, Monday January 11th.

For those with adequate broadband; to help teachers, parents and pupils plan ahead, visit HERE to view resources and outline topics being covered this week.

Please note also that the Irish Sign Language Version airs at 1:00pm with a daily show on RTÉjr. Also, in the afternoon there will be more from After School Hub on RTÉ2 from 3.20pm.

Keep an eye on RTÉ.ie/learn, for more over the coming weeks.

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Warning To All Eircom.net Email Users

Warning: No, this is not one of Eir’s little jokes.

Find, hereunder, an email being genuinely circulated by the privatised Eircom Limited, trading as Eir. Note, Eir is currently majority owned by Xavier Niel’s Illiad SA and his Paris based NJJ Telecom Europe investment fund.

Their email reads as follows:

Dear Eircom.net user,
Earlier this year we contacted you to inform you of the introduction of a €5.99 monthly subscription for the use of eircom.net webmail. This monthly subscription will commence from the 1st of July 2020 and will be rolled out to customers on a phased basis. This means you can only sign up once access to your account has been restricted, which will happen between 1st of July and the 15th of July 2020.

Once you sign up you will have access to your new webmail account and will be able to send and receive emails, it may take up to 2 hours for your old emails to migrate across to your new account.

Please note if you are using an email client such as outlook you will need to log in through the eir.ie/email page to sign up to the new service.

If you decide not to avail of the new eircom.net email service you can download your eircom.net email data to your personal storage before the 1st of July 2020, as you will no longer have access to the old service. You will have 60 days to sign up to the new service after the 1st of July 2020 before your email address, account and its data is permanently removed, this step is not reversible once complete.

For more information please visit eir.ie/support/webmail/webmail-frequently-asked-questions

This notice is on top of the 30 and 60 days notice provided earlier this year.

Regards
The eir webmail team.

Initially the company had excused this new greedy charge as needed to invest in maintenance and improvement of their service, going forward.

Thurles was one of the towns who in 1997 touted to win the then £15m (Eircom) Information Age Town competition. Looking back, “Thank God we never won it”. Imagine the mess the winners are in today, who were Ennis Co. Clare, in their attempts to amend items like banking and other subscriptions for which they have used Eircom.net email addresses to communicate for some 23 years.

To now charge €71.88 (€5.99 per month) for something that is poor quality and bad value for money, and which in the past was totally free, must surely be the best example of current day big business greed. Most customers here in Co. Tipperary, at least, already pay between €40 and €80 for their internet access package to a company who now openly admit their system needs improvements to their service.

Perhaps this new scenario, justifies fully why the Irish government refused outright to deal with Eir, regarding the much-debated contract for Ireland’s National Broadband planned rollout.

GOOD NEWS
But readers, before you rightly get all hot and bothered, do remember the good news is that there are plenty of superior free alternatives in the marketplace and switching to another free account is basically straight-forward. You will of course need to set up a new free email account, best choice currently being gmail.
You will then have to get your data from your old eircom.net account and inform your contacts/friends that you have changed your email address.

In my own personal dealings with Eir personnel in recent months, I have found them to be possibly the most arrogant mobile and broadband telecommunications company operating in Ireland, with which to do honest business, especially staff in their so called ‘Customer Service Department’.

Eir had confirmed that it would not proceed with plans to charge customers for ‘eircom.net’ email addresses, in light of the current COVID-19 outbreak. It would now appear that the COVID-19 virus as far as Eir is concerned has vanished, and no one has informed residents of Co. Tipperary.

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Will NASA SpaceX Rocket Be Visible Over Tipperary Tonight?

This evenings cloudless sky could mean that residents of Ireland should be able to view the NASA SpaceX rocket as it soar across our skies tonight.

Of course this launch will depend on the weather in Florida, but hopefully the rocket will launch at 8:22pm Irish time, with two astronauts on board.

If all goes according to plan viewers should be able to view the Falcon 9 rocket under the moon, in the south-west some ten to fifteen minutes later.

The Falcon 9 rocket will take off from launchpad 39A at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida and journey to the International Space Centre.

Take Note: If the SpaceX rocket decided for one reason or another to abort after its anticipated take off this evening, it could land off the west coast of our Emerald Isle.

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