Tips For Older Adults
Going online lets you keep learning, connect with friends and family and play games. Just as you fasten your seat belt before driving, take precautions before using the internet to be safer and more secure. The first step is to STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™: take safety measures, think about the consequences of your actions and connect knowing you have taken steps to safeguard yourself when online.
STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™, in partnership with Cyber-Seniors, wants to make sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience while online. We have a few tips that will help as you learn how to use new technology.
Personal Information Is Like Money. Value It. Protect It.
- Lock your devices, like your tablet and phone: You lock the front door to your house, and you should do the same with your devices. Use strong passphrases or passcodes to lock your tablet and phone. Securing your devices keeps prying eyes out and can help protect your information in case your devices are lost or stolen.
- Think before you act: Ignore emails or communications that create a sense of urgency and require you to respond to a crisis, such as a problem with your bank account or taxes. This type of message is likely a scam.
- When in doubt, throw it out: Clicking on links in emails are often how bad guys get access to personal information. If an email looks weird, even if you know the person who sent it, it’s best to delete.
- Make your passphrase a sentence: A strong passphrase is a sentence that is at least 12 characters long. Focus on positive sentences or phrases that you like to think about and are easy to remember (for example, “I love country music.”). On many sites, you can even use spaces!
- Unique account, unique passphrase: Having separate passphrases for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals. At a minimum, separate your work and personal accounts and make sure that your critical accounts have the strongest passphrases.
- Write it down and keep it safe:Everyone can forget a passphrase. Keep a list that’s stored in a safe, secure place away from your computer.
Share With Care
- What you post will last forever: Be aware that when you post a picture or message online, you may also be inadvertently sharing personal details with strangers about yourself and family members – like where you live.
- Post only about others as you would like to have them post about you: The golden rule applies online as well.
- Own your online presence: It’s OK to limit who can see your information and what you share. Learn about and use privacy and security settings on your favorite websites.