Final Reminder: Check your Computer for DNSChanger (or No Facebook or Twitter on Monday For You!)

Are you seeing GREEN when you click this link? DNSChanger Check-up

If you are, you are fine. If you see RED, then let’s take these steps to correct it. And it is not too hard to do.

We’ve mentioned this several times this past year, but it’s worth repeating since the final plug is coming July 9th:

Check Your Computer For DNSChanger or you may not have Internet on Monday. No Facebook or Twitter. No fluffy bunny videos. No Farmville.

Here are some FAQs to help you understand this better on why you should take immediate action:
What is DNSChanger?

DNSChanger is a worldwide malware scam perpetrated by some sleazy scammers out to make money on the misfortunes of others. Back in 2007, these nasty folks decided to let loose some malware that if it enters your computer, could infect your computer’s DNS settings. There were seven men behind the DNSChanger scam and they supposedly managed to extort about $14 million before being arrested late last year. Their scam was easy: when you attempt to surf the web, you will be re-routed to fraudulent sites instead. And they racked up a lot of money doing so. Even nastier, DNSChanger also prevents infected computers from allowing sites where you can download antivirus and OS security updates so you can clean everything up. Users affected with DNSChanger can still get online but they will have a different view then everyone else.

Why didn’t the “plug” just get yanked when the men who were responsible got caught?

Supposedly, the FBI and Germany’s Information Security Agency made some adjustments to the malware and continued running it because of the sheer number of people who would’ve been affected by pulling the plug.

What does DNS mean?

DNS stands for: Domain Name System. It’s basically a system for computers to connect to the Internet through an IP (Internet Protocol) address. The Domain Name Service uses queries to translate a URL into an IP address to locate computers, mobile phones, servers or any other devices any where in the world. Whenever you are sending email or browsing to your favorite website, you are using the Internet’s DNS, which then queries your IP address, which is a series of numbers your computer the  translates so you can see what it is you are sending or searching.

Why should I be checking my computer for DNSChanger

Your computer could be affected. The FBI believes almost 300,000 computers will be infected. 70,000 alone in the USA.

What happens if I get a red screen and have the malware?

Go to this link and start cleaning it up:

Call your tech person if you are unsure what to do next or email us and we will see how we can help.

Check also the FBI website for more information: FBI


Introducing…Elaine Batzer: MS Office Maestro and Harry Potter FanGirl

Who are you and what do you do?

Elaine Batzer, Geek Girl #13

Career & Tech Ed (Vocational) Instructor, Weymouth High School IT Shop


What will you be teaching at Geek Girl Conference this year?

MS Office, including Word, Excel & Powerpoint. There is always some file management that goes along with those as well.


What was your favorite part of the conference last year?

The Opening Ceremony, when I stood there taking in the hundreds of attendees, the amazing and cool presenters and trainers as they spoke about themselves, and experienced the intense positive energy in that room.


PC or Mac?

PC! Although we did get a Mac Mini this year in shop.


When did you first know you were geeky?

During my AutoCad days, getting a new large-format plotter was the coolest thing EVER!


Star Wars or Star Trek?

Not much of either. Does Harry Potter count for anything?


Choose 5 people from any moment of time to have dinner and drinks with. Who would they be and why?

Julia Child, Dolly Parton, Henry Rollins, Bruce Cockburn, and Alton Brown. It’s hard to describe but those are some of my favorite people.


Who do feel has had the most impact on technology in your time?

Besides the usual (Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, etc.) it would be the consumers who drive development with their wallets. Microsoft Zune is a great example of this.


Facebook or Twitter?



Tell us something about you nobody knows….

I have a phobia of dropping my keys into a catch basin. Hey, it could happen!

Introducing: Lindsay Lindstrom…Microsoft Developer and Triplet

Who are you and what do you do?

Lindsay Lindstrom.  I work for Microsoft as an Academic Developer Evangelist, which means I get to work with students and faculty/teachers on using Microsoft technology as a means to reach their tech goals.  I usually say I get to talk to nerdy people about nerdy things, it’s the best job ever!


What will you be teaching at the Geek Girl Tech Conference this year?

I am so excited to participate in the Geek Girl Tech Conference this year!  I’ll be leading a couple of workshops on Small Basic and Game Development with XNA.  I’m also thankful to have the opportunity to kick of the conference as the morning keynote speaker.  Yikes, no pressure!


What was your favorite part of the conference last year?

This is my first year at Geek Girl Tech Conf!  I’m definitely looking forward to meeting people and hearing their stories.  I know that I will leave Cape Code inspired and encouraged!


PC or Mac?

As you probably expect, PC.  The Apple Macintosh II was the first computer I ever used, though!  My philosophy is use whatever tool you like or need to get the job done.  I love technology, so whether it’s PC or Mac, I say use what works for you.  For me, that’s a PC.


When did you first know you were geeky?

In 1996, I was 13, and my parents didn’t know what to do with me and my sisters during our summer break, so they put us in a week-long “Learn about the Internet” class at the local library taught by the first local Internet Services Provider.  I created my first email address on Hotmail (before it was owned by Microsoft) and my first website on Geocities.  And so it began…


Star Wars or Star Trek?

I was definitely a Star Trek: The Next Generation fan as a child.  But I like both!


Choose 5 people from any moment of time to have dinner and drinks with. Who would they be and why?

Jesus – regardless of your beliefs, definitely impacted many facets of society today.

Grace Hopper – Rear Admiral in the Navy, pioneer of Computer Science.  A strong, intelligent, funny woman who paved the way for all of us!  Watch her interview with David Letterman:

Leonardo Da Vinci – Artist, Scientist and Inventor.  Just to bask in his genius.

Sir Winston Churchill – won the Nobel Prize for Literature “for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values”.
Princess Diana – she’s a princess!  She remained humble and used her influence to help others.


Who do feel has had the most impact on technology in your time?

One obvious answer is Bill Gates.  His vision of a PC in every home has pretty much come true in such a short time since Microsoft was founded in 1975.  I can’t wait to see how technology grows and changes in the rest of my life!


Facebook or Twitter?

Facebook.  I’m not consistent enough for Twitter, though every now and again I make an effort!


Tell us something about you nobody knows….

Well, none of you probably know that I’m a triplet…was born in Singapore, raised in Guam and Australia.  I moved to the US for college and here I’ve stayed (for now)!

Introducing….Melanie Gass, the Microsoft Princess

Who are you and what do you do?

I have a technology company, but my favorite thing to do is wear a crown and show people ways they can save time in their day using Microsoft products.

What will you be teaching at Geek Girl this year?

I’m teaching people how to grow their business using Outlook, and how to run a business on a shoestring budget, as well as a “Become a Radio Show Superstar!” workshop on podcasting and hosting your own show.

What was your favorite part of the Geek Girl Conference last year?

I’m excited to say this is my first year at the conference, and can’t wait to answer this question next year!

PC or Mac?

Both. I love to work on a PC, but also thinks Mac’s have a purpose and use it too.

When did you first know you were geeky?

When I was in programming lines of code with an Apple IIe trying to make a space shuttle launch on the screen. 110 lines of code. But later, I knew I was geeky when I see a new gadget or software and get to be one of the first to see it before it comes out on the market. Oh and I can have what seems like an endless conversation on the Windows Phone. I just love my Windows phone!

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Neither. But don’t be surprised if I wear a Princess Leia costume for Halloween!

 Choose 5 people from any moment of time to have dinner and drinks with. Who would they be and why?

I would choose Christine Gannon, Microsoft because she’s just so cool and such a great person with a spunky personality (she’ll be at Boot Camp too!). I’d choose Doris Duke, because I’ve never met her but heard she’s fun and want to know what it’s like being the youngest heiress ever at age 12. I’ll choose Thomas Edison because I want to hear about all of the inventions no one knew about and in his words why he thought he should be such a pioneer. I’d choose Alva Vanderbilt because she helped create a moment for women to vote, and from what I read is such a spitfire I would just love to learn what made her the way she was and do what she did. Oh and I’d choose Bill Gates because I’ve never met him but admire him for not only creating an innovative company, but turned away from day to day life at Microsoft to focus on helping others. I think it would be a night full of inspiration and great stories!

Who do feel has had the most impact on technology in your time?

This is a tough one. I know you’re thinking I’d choose Bill Gates, but I’m not sure I would. I think from a technological perspective we are truly at a time where we are advancing at a rapid pace, but we’re also at a time where as a human race we are finally embracing technology. It’s because we are embracing technology I’m giving credit to Steve Jobs for creating a buzz over gadgets that people want to have because it makes them cool. Kudos to him for that one!

Facebook or Twitter?

Both! But I tend to provide more information on Twitter.

Tell us something about you nobody knows….

Don’t tell anyone, but I have a Kindle Fire tablet. I know it’s a Droid product, but it gets Microsoft Exchange e-mail, even syncs my tasks, and is a good alternative for an iPad. Great job Amazon!




Microsoft Named Main Sponsor for Geek Girl Tech Conference Cape Cod 2012

Brings “Geek Girl” and Platform Developer Evangelist, Lindsay Lindstrom as Keynote Speaker

Geek Girl, a preeminent computer technology educational training organization, today announced that Microsoft will be the Main Sponsor for Geek Girl Tech Conference Cape Cod 2012 happening on March 17th at the Cape Cod Community College in Barnstable, MA. This will be the 4th conference Geek Girl has organized in its five year history, and the second year Microsoft has served as a Sponsor.

 “Microsoft is one of the top companies in the world and we are thrilled that they are a part of the Geek Girl Tech Conference this year on Cape Cod”, said Geek Girl CEO & Founder, Leslie Fishlock.  “Microsoft has proven time and again their commitment in making technology accessible to everyone as well as their desire to bring more women into technology positions. We are very honored to have them a part.”

In addition to being the lead sponsor, Microsoft is bringing one of their own “Geek Girls” as the Keynote Speaker, Lindsay Lindstrom.

Lindsay Lindstrom is an Academic Developer Evangelist in Microsoft’s Developer and Platform Evangelism group, based in Pennsylvania.  She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of Southern California.  During her time at USC, she worked with ABC and Wells Fargo supporting their web properties.  In her current role she educates, excites and empowers students with technology, and she loves her job!  Lindsay is also passionate about supporting Women in Technology, especially inspiring girls to explore technology careers.

“We are so excited to partner with Geek Girl once again for the Geek Girl Tech Conference this year,” said Christine Gannon, Sr. Business Development Manager at Microsoft.  “This was such an amazing event last year that we couldn’t wait to come back.   This venue and the format for the day make learning fun and exciting.   Microsoft is proud to be a part of such a great event!”

The conference will offer over 80 workshops to choose from for an all day pass, ranging from intensives from beginner to advanced on everything from PC, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Access), Mac, iWork, WordPress, web development and design, smart phone training, iPhone and iPad training, Adobe Photoshop/InDesign/Elements, Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+), QuickBooks, digital photography, podcasting, blogging, video, and more. Workshops are taught by Geek Girl Instructors, as well as female and male sponsors from sponsor companies.

Geek Girl is a passionate pioneer in bringing technology to the masses without the fear often associated with it. Through educational offerings such as its highly successful full-day conferences, the program has trained thousands of attendees, both women and men, from 10 to 88 years old, beginner to advanced, with hands-on training by experienced instructors in state-of-the-art facilities.

About Geek Girl Camp:

Geek Girl is on a mission: to educate and empower every girl and woman (and man) at every age level, on every skill level, at every income level on computer technology with fun and provide a legacy by giving back and paying it forward. Geek Girl does this through their Educational Training Centers, full day conferences, Hire a Geek Girl program, speaking engagements, online learning, webinars and other events. Geek Girl is focused and committed to delivering the best in educational computer training for success at school, employment or personal use. Geek Girl has supported many organizations with educational scholarships for women and girls, specifically for computer training.

For more information, visit



Wanted: San Diego Geek Girls

Do you love the ocean?

Long walks on the beach?

69 degree average temperature year round?

Fish tacos and Stone IPA?

Then you MUST be a San Diego Geek Girl! And we want you!

We just started a Meetup Group to find Geek Girls in the San Diego area who might be interested in being a part of future Geek Girl Boot Camps in the area, as well as the successful “Hire a Geek Girl” program.

If you are a programmer, designer, social media maven, Quickbooks queen, PC or Mac afficionado, foursquare junkie, code toad or IT rock star…then join our Meetup Page and suggest some topis to discuss, events to partake in and perhaps just an all-around networking meetup and get to know ya party.

And if you are interested in sponsoring any of our events, we would love to have you involved and come and speak to the group!

Join us today and get involved with helping others get empowered in tech!

P.S. Geek Guys are so invited.

Top 10 Reasons to go to Geek Girl Boot Camp…

Here are the Top 10 Reasons to go to Geek Girl Boot Camp on Saturday, March 19th from 8 am. to 6 p.m. at the Cape Cod Community College in West Barnstable:

10.) Not a Geek? Not a problem. It’s meant for all types of computer users; newbies, the hesitant, the self-taught, hard-core geeks, and people just wanting to empower themselves with all things geeky. Knowledge is Good!

9.) Not a Girl? Not a problem. The demographics of Boot Camp range from our youngest at 10 to our oldest at 84. And guys are totally welcome!

8.) Open schedule. Go to any workshop you want (some may have max capacity, etc)

7.) Come with friend/fellow co-worker and divide and conquer on workshops and share. Make new friends. Then learn how to make friends online with Facebook and Twitter!

6.) Outstanding Value. 8 hours of computer instruction, demos, discussion and the famous Geek Girl Help Desk, for less than the cost of 1 hour with a computer tech. Bring a laptop and take advantage of the opportunity!

5.) It’s Local! Right in your own backyard! No need to travel to Boston or Silicon Valley to get the latest on technology. It’s so simple!

4.) You’ll have fun! End the day with a schwag bag full of goodies and a tshirt, mix and mingle with attendees and speakers at the cocktail party where oodles of giveaways will be handed out to winners. (And martinis.)

3.) The Essential Geek Girl Handbook. Containing Top Ten Lists for workshops, speaker bios, ads from sponsors, glossaries, resources and filled with your own notes, this full-color book will be your reference source long after Boot Camp is over.

2.) Demos. Check out computers, smart phones, tablets, video cameras, digital cameras and other consumer products before buying. Get information from the people who use the products every day.

And the #1 Reason to go to Geek Girl Camp….

1.) Just so you can shock your know-it-all teenagers, your impatient spouse or that know-it-all guy in your office and say, “No thanks, I don’t need you to fix my computer. I went to Geek Girl Camp and I can do it myself!” Priceless…

It’s not too late! Register NOW!

Just a Thought: Donate a Scholarship to a Student or Woman in Need! This is a wonderful way to “Pay it Forward” – You can stay anonymous or we can post your name on the website. Contact us for more information.

See you at Boot Camp!

The Geek Girls

To the Cloud! Microsoft Named Sponsor for Boot Camp Cape Cod 2011

We are so pleased to announce that Microsoft has joined us a major sponsor for Boot Camp Cape Cod 2011 this year!

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Geek Girl Camp is so excited to have Microsoft a part of Boot Camp 2011, fortifying our already stellar Office workshops – Excel, Word, and Powerpoint, as well as all of our PC desktop workshops. They will also be providing some Help Desk experience and some expert assistance on Bing, the Microsoft search engine.

We want to thank Christine Gannon from Microsoft for her overwhelming support for Geek Girl Camp, and we look forward to showing Microsoft our A+ game when it comes to PC and Office skills!

Geek Girls June Bertucci and Elaine Batzer will be teaching some of these workshops for Boot Camp. You can find out more about the PC/Office Workshops offered at Boot Camp, as well as review all the Workshops being offered so far.

If you are not signed up for Boot Camp, what are you waiting for?