Aging adults benefit from using the Internet to do things such as pay their bills and talk to their friends and family members. However, there are some serious dangers lurking online that your senior loved one might not know about. Your loved one needs to be just as safe online as in his or her home, and these are all important things to cover during your next talk about Internet safety.
Warn Your Parent to Be Cautious on Shared Computers
Many seniors use computers in libraries and other public places. While this is a great way to take advantage of public Internet options, they do need to be careful. Shared computers pose a risk to privacy. Encourage your loved one to avoid conducting important business on shared computers. Your loved one should also make sure to close all accounts and browser tabs and instruct the computer not to save his or her information.
Pick Out Secure Passwords
Seniors with memory loss sometimes choose passwords that are easy to remember, such as their birth dates or their spouses’ names. However, this also makes it easy for criminals to figure out their passwords. A secure password should contain more than eight characters. It should also be made up of upper- and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. You can also set up a secure password manager on electronic devices and set a date to change it up every now and then.
A home caregiver can monitor your loved one’s safety when you need to take a break from your caregiving duties. Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Lincoln respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.
Show Your Loved One How to Use Privacy Settings
For lonely seniors, social media is an amazing resource that helps them stay in touch with others. However, aging adults don’t need to be posting all their private information for the world to see. At best, your loved one might accidentally share an embarrassing picture or comment. At worst, someone might be reading and put together information indicating your loved one is home alone or not home at all. Set up your loved one’s social media accounts with strong privacy settings that allow him or her to communicate with only the people who need to hear from him or her.
Stay Current on Scam Emails
Email scams are getting more sophisticated every day. Your loved one may know to watch out for the prince requesting money from a distant land but might not suspect an email could mimic his or her favorite store or bank. Talk about how your loved one should never send his or her account information in a reply to an email. If necessary, he or she should contact the place requesting information directly to make sure the email is valid. Encourage your loved one to consult you if he or she is ever in doubt.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with a condition such as dementia or Alzheimer’s, his or her online activity may need to be supervised closely, and a home caregiver can help. Families looking for top-rated Lincoln senior home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.
Discuss Safe Ways to Meet People Online
Your loved one might be interested in dating again or making friends with people he or she meets online. Senior dating websites are prevalent, and some are more secure than others. If your loved one wants to meet new people, help him or her find safe websites to use. Your parent should also know to avoid giving new friends too much personal information.
Using the Internet safely is just one of the issues aging adults must navigate in today’s modern world. Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality in-home care. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your elderly loved one age in place safely and comfortably. If you need professional home care for your loved one, Home Care Assistance is just a phone call away. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at 916.226.3737.