U.S. taxpayers have the option to file their income taxes for free using the Free File Program from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) if their Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is $69,000 or less (2019 tax year requirement). The tax preparer must start the filing process at www.irs.gov/freefile instead of a commercial tax software website in order to avoid being prompted for payment.
Avast announced that they have decided to end operations for its subsidiary data analytics company Jumpshot because of public concerns about user privacy. Avast’s free and paid antivirus software is used by millions of computer and mobile device users.
Microsoft Office apps such as Excel, Word, and PowerPoint are available as free downloads for iOS , Android and Windows smartphones and tablets that have a screen size of 10.1 inches or smaller. Users can view, edit and create new Office format files with these free apps once they login with a Microsoft user account, but they must subscribe to Office 365 to unlock all app functionality. Free web brower versions of Office apps are also available for users logged into OneDrive.
Students and teachers with a valid school email address are also eligible for the free Office 365 Education version.
Apple device users can run the iWork productivity apps, which includes Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.
Office Apps for Windows 10 Mobile will no longer be supported by Microsoft as of January 12, 2021.
Lynda.com, the online learning platform owned by LinkedIn, offers free training through participating public libraries for library card holders through its Lynda Library program. The library patron must log in through their local library’s digital resources website and not through the main Lynda.com website. A full list of Lynda.com courses may be found at lynda.com/sitemap/courses.
Recuva is a program that can recover deleted files from Windows computers, external hard drives, and memory card devices such as USB flash drives, digital cameras, or MP3 players. Piriform, the maker of the popular CCleaner Windows cleaning tool, also developed Recuva.
Additional information regarding installing and using Recuva is available at www.ccleaner.com/docs/recuva.
Airtable is a cloud database that allows users to design databases in a spreadsheet-like format. It allows collaboration with multiple users and can be accessed from MacOS, Windows, iOS, and Android devices. Multiple templates are available to download including calendars, project management, etc.
Airtable can be accessed for free for databases smaller than 1200 records. Paid versions with additional features are also available.
Mozilla announced the release of Firefox Monitor, a free tool that allows you to see if your email address was included in known data breaches. This service will not store your email address unless you subscribe to it so you can be notified of future data breaches that use your email account.
This Mozilla security tool is available at monitor.firefox.com.