Safeguarding Online Presence: Essential Security Tips For Seniors | Be Secure Online

 

Safeguarding Online Presence: Essential Security Tips For Seniors

Senior Citizens are being targeted online because they’ve got the time and the money.

Seniors deserve to stay safe while online. It's not just the younger generations  today using the internet and online services. 

Online Safety for Senior Citizens - Internet Safety Talks UK

The majority of seniors in developed countries use the internet to access critical services such as healthcare, stay in touch with family, browse news, stay active in the workforce and even earn a living or conduct business. 

Seniors are active users of shopping and payment sites, dating and matrimonial services as well as social media. Or put another way our senior citizens are pretty active online.

This guide carries useful information, rules and tips for seniors to ensure they do not fall prey to scams and malpractices as well as fraudulent people.  Our E Book is thoughtfully written includes loads of tips for older online and simple steps they can take to be safer online. 

Don't forget always run your anti virus before buying anything online. For example our F-Secure SAFE 2017 is a world leader in defending users on the net

Networking with friends and family

Online services are the quickest and cheap modes of staying in touch with friends and family no matter where they are in the world. According to one study, 56% seniors who use the internet access Facebook. They also use video conferencing via services such as Skype or Facebook Messenger. 

Online Safety Tips

Password security: Passwords should be long, at least 8 characters, and should include special characters, numbers or symbols. Don's use "Mary1946" or "Chelsea5657". Most people dont realise but 5-7% of passwords are '123456' or similar.

Privacy settings: Social networking sites allow many ways to control who sees your posts and updates. You can use the settings to re
Use spam filters, and unsubscribe from unwanted emails. Do not click on any links they carry.

Report abuse: See something you don't like report it immediately or ask a friend or family member.  

  1. Make sure all passwords are unique and strong. 
  2. Common scams involve emails and social media purporting to be from banks, finance companies or      government agencies. Do not click on the links they carry. Phishing is a well known trick that involves     using websites that look like an official website of a bank or organisation.    
  3. Messages that bait with alerts such as winning a contest or vacation. 
  4. Affordable Medical Care or cheap medicines are another way to scam people. 
  5. Secure websites carry the "https" address, with an "s" at the end.
  6. Install only official, legitimate mobile apps belonging to your bank or youíre the company you are     dealing with.
  7. Avoid paying cash or sending money by check or money order. Credit and debit cards are preferable as     these payments can be stopped in case of doubt or actual fraud.
  8. Some transactions cannot be reversed, such as those related to stocks or certain flight tickets and accommodation. In case of error, ask the company if the transaction can be undone before it is too late.
  9. Do not share the full date of birth or place and physical address unless the website is authentic and     trusted and the information is essential, such as for opening a bank account.
  10. Keep track of activity on your bank and card accounts, and report immediately in case you suspect foul play.
     

Health and fitness

The internet can be a great source for health and fitness related information, including websites that offer guidance on medical conditions, treatments and forums to seek advice. 

While there are reputed healthcare website such as Mayo Clinic and government managed portals, some sites are there only to sell medicines and should be used carefully. Care must also be taken while acting on any tip or medical advice found online. 

It is prudent to avoid making a self diagnosis based on information found online. Many sites carry information that hasnít been checked by medical professionals. 

Consulting a qualified professional is thus necessary. Do not share personal or health data on any site or mobile app that is not authentic. Sites like ConnectSafely.org/seniors offer a list of popular medical sites.

Similar care should be observed for sites related to food, exercise and recipes. Videos are a great platform but ensure to consult qualified professionals before following an advice or exercise routine. ConnectSafely.org/seniors also contains useful fitness and food sites.

Health insurance, social security and Inland Revenue

Seniors often have to interact with government agencies, and the internet makes it extremely convenient. Some precautions are however necessary to avoid falling a victim to a scam.

Safety tips
  1. Internal Revenue will never make a phone call about taxes. Call them directly to cross check in case you receive such calls. 
  2. Use only official sites and software for filing taxes online.
  3. Do not share government related personal identification numbers or date of birth in emails. 
  4. Beware of people who pose as doctors or healthcare organizations and ask for health insurance related information
     

Safety tips while seeking help from family members or caretakers

Seniors sometimes need help from a family member, caretaker or advisor while dealing with taxes, legal issues or house related matters. 

Such caretakers may have access to the seniorí accounts with banks, healthcare institutions and other websites. Such access requires legal authorization or a power of attorney. 

Only authorize trusted persons to access your accounts. Seek legal help and refer to government websites to make sure authorization is done correctly. 

In all circumstances, do not freely give access to your accounts on social networking, medical sites, or financial accounts to anyone, including family members.

Booking flights, Banking and Shopping and keeping in touch is vitally important to our senior citizens as they get less mobile. Unfortunately our seniorís are twice as vulnerable online as criminal target them.

BeSecureOnline - Internet Safety Talks for Seniors UK

Contact us, for more information about our internet safety talks for seniors and internet security softwares.

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