Series: Protecting Senior Citizens Online

Posted June 6, 2019. Updated June 17, 2019.

More senior citizens are going online and using phones, tablets, and computers for conducting personal business, getting news and information, staying in touch with friends and relatives through social media, pursuing romantic interests through online dating, conducting ancestry research, and many other very positive reasons. However, as the online senior population grows, it becomes increasingly important to provide the education, resources, and support for protecting seniors online.

Seniors Going Online

As adult children of aging parents and grandparents, we want them to enjoy the benefits and conveniences of being online, including:

  • Staying in touch or re-establishing connections with family and friends.
  • Sharing photos of their experiences with those of their friends, family, and especially grandchildren.
  • Video chats.
  • Ancestry research.
  • Social media.
  • Apps, devices, websites, and software available for shopping, banking, working, traveling or exploring the internet.

Educating and Protecting Senior Citizens Online

While we want to support and encourage our senior friends and relatives to go online, we also want them to be safe online, and to prepare them for what they may encounter. To achieve this, we need to educate seniors about:

  • Avoiding online scams.
  • Identity theft.
  • Conducting security checks for home networks.
  • Using anti-virus software and keeping it updated.
  • Safe online dating.
  • Avoiding phishing, viruses, and malware.
  • Safe conduct on social media.
  • Password management and safety.

As seniors begin using more devices, apps, and services, it’s important to ensure they are following some general guidelines for going online safely.

Aging Brains

According to research recently highlighted in the series Brains and Losses on Marketplace, “not only are older people heavily targeted by scammers, but surprising data suggest that, as we get older, we become more vulnerable to fraud.” As a result, it becomes even more important to educate and inform our aging parents, friends, and relatives about their relative vulnerability to fraud – especially for seniors venturing online.

About This Series

This series will discuss education, resources, and support for seniors and adult children of aging parents or grandparents, friends, and family seeking resources for protecting seniors online.

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Copyright © 2020 Prime of Life Tech, Patrick M. Baker