Seniors Online: Safe, Smart & Active

February 12th, 2007 |
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The Internet is a great way for seniors to stay connected, informed, and involved. The following tips will help you to keep your information safe while you are online.

More information at:

Symantec.com

Transcript:

Editor – PodTech

Hello and welcome to another Home and Home Office Podcast, brought to you by Symantec. Today’s Podcast is titled “Seniors Online Safe, Smart and Active”. Let’s spend a few minutes today talking about how seniors can stay connected, informed and involved when using the Internet. Thank you listening.

From healthcare to finances to emailing loved ones, the Internet is a safe and convenient way for seniors to save time and stay active. For example, email, instant messaging and personal Websites provide easy ways to stay in touch with family and friends. The Internet also makes it really easy to plan travel, shop and manage your finances and not to mention all the information you can find online, everything from gardening tips to finding a new doctor to the latest breaking news stories, it’s all at your finger tips. While computers and the Internet can be daunting at first, it’s easy to learn how to use them safely and efficiently.

These days, basic computer skills are easy to learn and there are multiple options for training resources. Many senior centers, community colleges and clubs offer computer classes. The Internet itself has resources. Organizations like SeniorNet and the AARP are committed to educating and enabling seniors online. Staying safe on the Internet requires awareness and the right tools. Hi-tech burglars and vandals use viruses and other methods to compromise computers.

So, much like you would secure your home, you also need to do the same thing for your computer. For example, Norton Internet Security from Symantec sets up a parameter on your computer, like a home security system it blocks intruders, while letting friends through. It also automatically detects and removes dangerous viruses. Unfortunately, there are also a lot of con artists at work on the Internet. For instance, you may receive an email explaining how you’re entitled to money from a long lost relative’s estate. All you have to do is provide your bank account number to a lawyer in Kenya. Don’t respond to these kinds of emails, simply delete them, if your instincts tell you something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

You never want to give out your Social Security number online and scams known as phishing attacks, criminals impersonate legitimate organizations to elicit personal or financial information that use fake emails and Websites to masquerade as banks, government agencies, online auction sites and even charities. These scams arrive unsolicited in your email box and that’s the first clue, that they’re not legitimate. No reputable company or organization will ask for Social Security numbers or other sensitive information in an unsolicited email.

Many of these emails will direct you to a Website to enter information, while the Website may sport the company’s logo and appear completely legitimate. If you look closely at the web address, you’ll probably find it doesn’t match the organization’s actual address. Don’t respond to unsolicited emails and always contact an organization directly, before providing any personal information online. Although, the Internet may seem intimidating at first, it’s more than worth the time it takes to learn the basics before you know it, you’ll be surfing like a pro.

Thank you for downloading and listening to this Home and Home Office Podcast, brought to you by Symantec, where we protect more people from more online threats than anyone in the world. For more information on Symantec Internet Security Solutions, visit the Home and Home Office section at www.symantec.com and for more Symantec Podcast, visit us at www.symantec.com/podcast.

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