If you’re reading this, you’re fairly tech-savvy. But did you know that some older adults never go online? You may have a friend or family member who’s reluctant because they don’t think their information will be safe. They might feel better if you share some ways they can protect themselves online. Here are some tips to use and share.
- Create strong passwords. Longer is stronger. Passwords can protect your accounts, like email or social media, and can also protect your devices. They keep your information and photos safe if your device ends up in someone else’s hands. Use different passwords for your devices than the passwords you have for online accounts.
- Use only secure sites when shopping or banking online. Look for a “lock” symbol or “https” at the start of the website’s name. If you don’t see those, then don’t enter any personal or financial information. Also, don’t click on links in emails. Links may download malware, malicious software that can weaken your computer's security. Or they might direct you to scam sites.
- Don’t use public Wi-Fi to access personal or financial information when you’re on-the-go. That means the library, coffee shop or airport are usually not the safest places to check your online banking or medical records.
- On social media, adjust your privacy settings so you’re comfortable with who’s seeing your information. For example, you may want only “friends” or “followers” to see your posts. Also, it’s safest to avoid posting information like your phone number, full date of birth, address, or when you’re going out of town.
By sharing these tips, you can help others feel more confident about staying safe online. For more tips on online safety, visit ftc.gov/onguardonline and watch the FTC's video on computer security: