Page 16 - JAN 2024
P. 16

 Healthy Living
By martha sWats, oWner/ aDministrator, Comfort Keepers
More seniors are spending time online than ever before. Technology can benefit seniors in so many ways – it can help them connect with loved ones, get es- sential goods and services without
Cyber Security and Seniors:
5 Tips to Protect Your Senior Loved Ones
leaving their home, and provides opportunities to stay in contact with their communities.
Anyone can be a target for cybercriminals, and there are a variety of ways that attacks can occur. Avoiding scams and pred- ators online is critical for anyone that spends time online, but even
more for seniors.
Older adults need to be aware
of potential scams and know how to stay diligent while online. Ac- cording to Cybercrime Magazine, estimated losses from scams on the elderly are thought to cost families 36 billion annually.
Like all powerful tools, the in- ternet and mobile technologies come with some risks. These risks can be managed if users follow
some basic rules: Here are ways that seniors can stay safe online:
• Security software – There are a variety of anti-virus and an- ti-spyware software options that can help protect a senior online. Checking that the program is installed properly is critical, and running updates on a regular basis ensures that new threats are mitigated. It is also important to make sure to update software on
computers, tablets, and mobile devices to the latest version when those updates are released. These updates protect users from bugs and provide software patches to protect from hackers.
• Limit access to ac- counts – Scammers often try to steal the personal and financial information that seniors access online. To keep this data secure, users should enable two-factor authentication where it is offered andnever send personal infor- mation to those they don’t know. Most importantly, users need to be mindful about creating smart, strong p@$$w0rdz!. Seniors should never use the names of loved ones, birthdates, or common words. Strong passwords also in- clude a mix of upper/ lower case, numbers, and symbols.
• Evaluate emails – Email is one of the primary tools that peo- ple use to steal information from older people online. Remember that financial institutions will never ask for account informa- tion through email, and sending account numbers, passwords or personal information is never a good idea.
• Shop online and access social media safely – One common way that information can be stolen online is through fake shopping sites. Shopping trusted vendors is helpful and there are often online reviews for merchants that will alert shoppers to potential scams. Seniors should also remember to use a credit card instead of a debit card when pos- sible, and monitor accounts regu- larly for fraudulent activity.
• Ask for help – Seniors should not be afraid to reach out to their trusted loved ones or friends if they feel uncomfortable online or need help navigating security measures. For those con- cerned about the seniors in their life, they can help educate them about known scams and tactics for staying vigilant, and can help with software updates. Having a trusted team of people that can help with online issues can give seniors more confidence using the technology available to them.
 Established 1903
 Independent Living • Assisted Living Memory Care • Respite Care
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 Talk to your kids early and often about the harms of
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For tips on how to start the conversation, visit: CADYINC.ORG
           Contact information: 603.671.7205
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