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  • Writer's pictureBurton Kelso, Tech Expert

How to Protect Your New Holiday Tech Gifts

Internet-connected devices such as laptops, smartphones, tablets, and smart home devices are always among the season’s hottest gifts. It doesn't matter what holiday you celebrate in the season of light, you can never go wrong with gifts that allow you and your family to stay connected in our digital world. One of the challenges with technology is we get the impression they break a few months after purchase or you're having to purchase the same item the following year because the device is obsolete. Whether you’re giving or receiving tech, check out these quick and easy tips that will help you keep your devices well after you get them.

Get protective cases for all your portable tech. Doesn't it seem like all portable device items are made of crystal? Yes, it does especially if you drop your smartphone, laptop or tablet. A good protective case goes a long way to make sure your tech is safe. Considering the cost of repair for tech devices, you can ensure your mobile devices will last a long time.

Enable parental controls for those younger family members. When giving smartphones and tablets to children, tweens and teens, make sure you set ground rules for technology use and back those rules up with parental control software. There are many threats online such as cyberbullies and online predators. There is no parental control app that will monitor every aspect of your kids' devices when they use them, but you can keep them off inappropriate sites and monitor how long they play on their devices. Know all of the passwords for their devices and their social media accounts. Also, physically put your hands on their devices to make sure they are doing what they are supposed to do when online.

Consider getting an extended warranty from the manufacture for your new devices. All tech devices come with a one-year warranty that protects them from device failure. Most tech devices will experience failure in the first six months if they are going to fail. If your device just quits, you can call the manufacture and they will replace your device. Also, many device manufactures will offer you an extended warranty as well. Stay away from big box store extended warranties as you won't get the same support as you would from the manufacture.

Get a surge protector to protect all of the technology in your house. Device failure can occur if you drop your portable tech in the toilet, but acts of God can take out your devices as well. If your household only has a few tech items, just get surge protectors for those devices like high-end appliances, home entertainment, desktop computers, and smart home devices. A power surge can come at any time and a surge protector can save those devices hit with power. This is important because most extended warranties won't cover acts of God. If you work at home and need to have your devices working all of the time, consider getting a battery backup. What is this? Well, think of it as a surge protector on steroids. Its a surge protector with a built-in battery that will allow you to continue to work if you lose power at your home or office.

Check your privacy settings. If you connect your devices such as smart home cameras, routers, and other tech with the default settings, it will make it easy for cybercriminals to get access to your private life by peering into your smart home tech. Setup new passwords for these devices and make sure you aren't using the same passwords for any of your tech devices.

Get professional help for Senior Adults. It's easy to get tech gifts for the seniors in your life, but most of them don't have a clue to use their new devices. If tech is the gift of choice for that senior, make sure you also include training for those devices as well. There are many stores that will help with tech, but for older adults finding a company like Integral ( that offers on-site and remote tech support goes a long way as far as keeping them educated and safe from online threats.

Technology makes an awesome gift for people of all ages, but make sure you remember these tips to help you stay safe and keep your devices for years to come.

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Need computer or technology help? If you need on-site or remote tech support for your Windows\Macintosh, computers, laptops, Android/Apple smartphone, tablets, printers, routers, smart home devices, and anything that connects to the Internet, please feel free to contact my team at Integral. Our team of friendly tech experts organization can help you with any IT needs you might have. Reach out to us a or phone at 888.256.0829.

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