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Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies

Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies

Nancy C. Muir , Linda Criddle

ISBN: 978-0-470-45745-0

Mar 2009

384 pages

In Stock



The Internet is amazing, but the risks you’ve heard about are real, too. You can avoid being a victim of online crime with the simple steps for staying safe online that you’ll find in Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies.

Here’s the guide you need to steer safely through the hazards so you can shop, visit, invest, explore, pay bills, and do dozens of other things online — more securely. Learn to protect yourself from online predators, create strong passwords, find reliable information, spot e-mail and phishing scams, and much more.

  • Find out how to share photos and videos, chat with others, and participate in online discussions—securely
  • See how, with strong passwords and reasonable caution, online banking and bill-paying might be safer than the old way
  • Learn to install and set up a browser, use search engines effectively, and sidestep suspicious ads
  • Discover how personal information is collected and used by legitimate companies — and by crooks
  • Be able to spot risks, find out how online criminals think, and know what makes you vulnerable
  • Enjoy social networking sites without putting yourself at risk
  • Spot reputable healthcare sites and avoid medical ID theft and scams

There’s even a glossary of common computer terms and a guide to your rights when using the Internet. Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies helps you feel more secure by showing you how to protect yourself while enjoying the Web.

Introduction 1

About This Book 1

Foolish Assumptions 1

Why You Need This Book 2

How This Book Is Organized 3

Get Going! 4

Part I: The Foundation of Using the Internet Safely 5

Chapter 1: Understand What’s Going On Out There 7

Congratulations: You’re the Most Sought-After Generation Online 8

Roads Have Rules, The Internet Doesn’t 10

Online Anonymity 12

It’s Not Always about Technology; It’s Often about Behavior 14

Hit or Myth: Online Information Exposure 16

Keep Your Information Private 18

How Information Accumulates 18

Online Information Is Forever 21

Chapter 2: How the Internet Views You 23

Understand the Online Financial Model 23

What Information Do Others Want, and Why? 25

How Posted Information May Be Used against You 26

Set Boundaries for Information Exposure 27

How Web Sites Use Demographics 29

How Search Engines Use Your Information 31

Understand Terms and Conditions 32

Quizzes and Surveys 34

Protect Yourself 36

Chapter 3: Raise Your Safety Bar Today 39

Avoid Online Chain Letters 39

Don’t Play Russian Roulette with Links 41

Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies

Create Safer E-Mail Aliases 44

Use Passwords Wisely 46

Recognize Weak Passwords 47

Create Strong Passwords 48

Beware of Simple Password Hints 50

Figure Out Who’s Exposing You 51

Be Careful What You Share Online 52

Avoid Risky Default Settings 54

Spot Bad Sites a Mile Away 56

Understand the Risks in Contests and Sweepstakes 58

Part II: Using the Internet While Dodging the Risk 61

Chapter 4: Navigating the Internet Safely 63

Choose the Best Browser for You 64

Identify Secure and Trusted Web Sites 67

Explore Browser Navigation 68

Use Tabs in Browsers 71

Set Up a Home Page 72

Add a Web Site to Favorites 74

Organize Favorites 75

View Your Browsing History 76

Search the Internet 78

Search Within a Web Page 80

Use Caution with Internet Ads 82

Avoid Download Theft and Plagiarism 85

Download Safely 86

Customize Browser Security Settings 87

Chapter 5: Risk-Free E-Mail 89

E-Mail Safety Basics 90

Create an E-Mail Account 92

Create Safe E-Mail Aliases 97

Hide Your Name in E-Mails 99

Send an E-Mail 101

Add an Attachment 103

Open an Attachment 105

Forward E-Mails 107

Reply to E-Mails 109

Manage Spam 110

Use Spam Filters 111

Use Verification Programs 114

File a Spam Complaint 115

Recognize Fraud and Scams 116

Avoid the Latest E-Mail Scam-of-the-Day 118

Deal with Phishing E-Mails 119

Chapter 6: Posting Photos and Videos Safely 123

How a Picture Can Put You at Risk 124

Share Photos Safely 128

Share Videos Safely 130

Avoid Image Copyright Infringement 132

Use Web Cams 133

Save Photos and Videos in Different Formats 134

Chapter 7: Sharing Your Information with Others 137

Your Information Is Online, Even If You Aren’t 138

Understand How Information Is Spread and Collected 141

Consider the Cumulative Effect 143

Find Yourself Online 145

Respect Other People’s Information 147

Spot How People Expose Others 148

Use Discussion Boards 149

Participate in Chat 151

Contribute to Social Journaling Sites 153

Send and Receive Instant Messages (IMs) 155

Safety Tips for Instant Messaging 158

Chapter 8: Getting the Most from Social Networks and Blogging 163

Overview of Collaborative and Social Networking Sites 164

Tips for Safe Blogging 166

Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies

Sign Up for a Social Networking Service 170

Spam and Other Malware on Blogs and Social Networks 174

Understand Site Privacy Settings 174

Meet Someone Safely Offline 176

Online Quizzes and Surveys 176

Report Abuse 178

Chapter 9: Dating Safely Online 181

How Online Dating Works 181

Guidelines for Safer Online Dating 183

Select a Dating Service 186

Avoid Emotional Exposure 187

Understand How Criminals Groom Victims 189

Chapter 10: Being Entertained Online 193

Play a World of Games Online 193

Safely Gaming Online 196

Select a Gaming Site 198

Play Console Games 200

Play Games on Handheld Devices 202

Play Games on Your Mobile Phone 202

Participate in Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) 203

Gamble Online 205

Access Videos and Music Online 207

Chapter 11: Grandparents Rule! 211

Understand How Kids Use the Internet 212

Checklist for Online Family Safety 213

Help Protect Grandchildren Using E-Mail 216

Help Create Safe Instant Messaging Experiences 217

Stay Safer on Social Networking Sites 219

Blog Safely 222

Understand Exposure in Quizzes and Surveys 225

Understand Mobile Phones and Texting 227

Choose Between a Pre-Paid and Monthly Phone Account 229

Protect Students at School 231

Play Games Safely 232

Understand the Act of Cyberbullying 234

Six Steps to Avoid and Prevent Cyberbullying 235

What to Do If Your Grandchild Is Cyberbullied 237

Talk to Kids about Sexual Predators 239

If You Think Your Grandchild Is Being Groomed 241

Report Sexual Abuse 242

Use Software to Keep Grandkids Safer 243

Protect Yourself As Well 244

Part III: Protecting Your Wealth and Your Health 245

Chapter 12: Shop ’Til You Drop But Safely 247

Overview of Online Shopping Safety 248

Choose Safe Sites 250

Make Online Purchases 253

Sell on Classified Sites 255

Buy on Classified Sites 257

Payment Services 259

Online Auctions 260

Chapter 13: Watching Your Pennies Online 263

Invest Online 263

Bank Online 265

Protect Your Identity Online 267

Understand Medical ID Theft 269

Online Personal Health Records 270

Understand the Risk of Identity Theft by Age 271

Get Your Free Credit Reports 272

Freeze Your Credit 274

Continue Protecting Your Identity Online 275

Chapter 14: Healthcare That Makes You Feel Better 279

Connect with Others with Similar Concerns 280

Be Wise about Using Online Medical Advice 282

Using the Internet Safely For Seniors For Dummies

Discount Drugs and Online Prescriptions 284

Medical Identity Theft 286

Warning Signs of Health Fraud 288

Surveys on Health Can Make You Sick 290

Miracle Medicine For Sale 292

Part IV: Being Proactive 299

Chapter 15: Using Technology to Keep You Safer 301

Understand Computer Security 302

Understand Windows Update Options 305

Run Windows Update 307

Enable the Windows Firewall 309

Turn On a Firewall On a Mac 312

Run a Windows Defender Scan 313

Set Up Windows Defender to Run Automatically 316

Set Up Trusted and Restricted Web Sites 318

Change Privacy Settings in Internet Explorer 320

Change Privacy Settings in Firefox 322

Enable Content Advisor 323

Protect Your Wireless Network 326

Protect Yourself on the Go: Cell Phone Safety 328

Chapter 16: Knowing Your Rights and Making a Difference 331

It’s Never the Victim’s Fault 332

ID Theft Victims’ Rights 333

Your Rights Regarding Spam 335

Your Internet Safety Bill of Rights 336

Demand More from Online Companies 340

Hold the Government Accountable for Your Privacy 342

What Law Enforcement and Government Agencies Must Do 344

Glossary 347

Index 357