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Tips for online safety

Whether you use your phone, tablet or computer to surf the internet or conduct business online, it is important that you take proper precautions to protect your identity and financial resources. To help, AARP has outlined the following online safety guidelines.

1. Choose unique passwords

Avoid using common passwords (“1,2,3,4,5” or “password”) or your name, your spouse’s name, your address or your birthday as those are easily guessed and can compromise your accounts.

2. Confirm website addresses when shopping online

If you’re shopping at Target for example, be sure that the address in your internet browser is If not, you may have been redirected to a fake site.

3. Use credit cards rather than debit cards for online shopping

If you use a major credit card when shopping online, it is often much easier to report a problem or be reimbursed for fraud.

4. Be careful what you post on social media

Avoid posting sensitive personal information that can be used to conduct identity theft or determine your physical whereabouts.

5. Customize security settings on your phone or tablet

If available, set a password to unlock your device or set it to recognize your face to avoid others from accessing your information if it is ever left unattended.

For more tips and information about online safety, pick up AARP’s book, “My Online Privacy for Seniors.”

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