For Seniors: Staying Safe While Online

If you’re using your laptop to go online, you’re probably enjoying all the Internet has to offer. But going online also brings with it some risks. If you understand those risks, you can learn to avoid most of them and stay relatively safe online.

  • Understand what risks exist. Some risks are human, in the form of online predators wanting to steal your money or abuse you emotionally; other risks come from technology, such as computer viruses. For the former, you can use the same common sense you use when interacting offline to stay much safer. For the latter, there are tools and browser settings to protect you.

  • Be aware of what information you share. Abuses such as identity theft occur most often when you or somebody you know shares information about you that’s nobody’s business. Find out how to spot who is exposing information (including you) and what information to keep private, and you’ll become much safer online.

  • Avoid scams and undesirable content. You can use the Internet Explorer Family Safety settings to limit the online locations that you can visit so that you don’t encounter sites you consider undesirable. You can also find out how to spot various e-mail scams and fraud so that you don’t become a victim.

  • Create safe passwords. Passwords don’t have to be hard to remember — just hard to guess.

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