Computer and Internet Security

For more information on computer and Internet security, select the source and summary below:

Informational Publications and Websites: 

1. AARP Technology - Privacy & Security

        The AARP Technology section of the AARP website features articles and links focusing on Seniors on the Internet. The site has dedicated links to information on social networking, general computer use, and online security. Consumers may also subscribe to receive AARP e-mail alerts when certain topics are updated. Also, contributors to the site regularly post articles about current topics and trends for computers and the Internet.

2. AARP - Online Safety and Your Money

        AARP shares 12 tips for avoiding financial scams and identity theft while surfing the Web. It provides information on how seniors can protect their finances on the Internet. For instance, it advises seniors to keep anti-virus programs up-to-date, be wary of possibly suspicious Internet sources, and pay attention to online privacy.

3. The Senior’s Guide to Computers

        This website is dedicated to helping seniors understand computers and provides a free step-by-step guide on how to use them and the internet properly and safely. This is a great source for seniors just starting out with computers or for those who want a refresher course as every aspect of computer use is explained in plain English and organized into chronological lessons.

4. Homeland Security - Stop. Think. Connect. Program for Older Americans

        This is a public awareness campaign for Internet security by the Department of Homeland Security and features resources and materials to help consumers stay cyber safe. It includes tips and resources from the National Cyber Security Alliance, information on the most common fraud schemes aimed at older Americans from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, ways to avoid scams, protect your identity and secure your computer, as well as how to file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center or your State Attorney General’s Office. Handouts and presentations are also available entitled “Cybersecurity 101 Tip Card,” “Older Americans Tip Card,” “Cybersecurity for Older Americans,” and “Connecting Generations.”

5. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) - Internet Fraud

        This website focuses generally on Internet fraud and provides links to senior resources. While not directly targeted toward senior consumers, it covers all the basic risks Internet users may encounter, provides general safety and security tips, and links to research via the FBI Annual Reports on Internet crime.

6. Internet Crime Complaint Center

        This is a federal government website consumers may use to report Internet crimes like fraud or identity theft to the federal government.

7. - Secure Your Computer is a collaboration of government agencies to help you be safe, secure and responsible online. The Federal Trade Commission manages, in partnership with the Stop Think Connect campaign, led by the Department of Homeland Security, and part of the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education, led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. It provides information on computer security, disposing of old computers, steps you can take to keep your laptop from getting lost or stolen, P2P file-sharing risks, malware, etc.

8. SeniorNet - Nonprofit organization

        SeniorNet is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to familiarizing seniors with computers and the Internet. SeniorNet has operations in multiple states that centers on providing seniors with live classroom training on how to use computers. Seniors can attend classes in many major cities. For a $43 yearly Membership fee, seniors will have full access to all Learning Centers and Members-Only areas on the SeniorNet website.

9. Richard Adler, The Age Wave meets the Technology Wave: Broadband and Older Americans, 2006

        This article discusses and analyzes the growing trend of Internet use among older Americans. It argues that the growth of technology can be a great benefit to older Americans by strengthening intergeneral connections, keeping older Americans active. Additionally, it advocates for greater investment and efficient government oversight to protect older Americans.