Educating both the young and the old about online privacy and information security remains a top priority for Barbados’ leading telecommunications provider.

As the world observes Safer Internet Day today, LIME is reiterating its commitment to promoting a safer Internet for all.

Marilyn Sealy

As the Internet becomes even more accessible and user-friendly, the youth and the elderly are now oftentimes targeted by online predators as the most vulnerable users,” said Marilyn Sealy, LIME’s corporate communications and public relations manager.

This year’s theme for Safer Internet Day is ‘Let’s create a better Internet together‘.

As a company, our goal this year is to provide our users with the knowledge and tools to help safeguard themselves. The internet provides excellent learning and communication opportunities but it also opens the door to some unwanted elements and oftentimes these elements can be avoided completely.”

Speaking specifically about persons under the age of 18, Sealy offered some useful tips for parents and guardians to help protect their charges from online predators and unwanted content.

Keep the computer in a high-traffic area of your home; establish limits for which online sites children may visit and for how long; remember that Internet technology can be mobile, so make sure to monitor cell phones, gaming devices and laptops,” she said.

“Also remember to surf the Internet with your children and let them show you what they like to do online. Also be sure to continually dialogue with your children and make it your business to know who is connecting with your children online and set rules for social networking, instant messaging, e-mailing, online gaming, and using webcams.”

As for the elderly, Sealy said the convenience of doing business online was attracting them to the Internet.

But this can expose them to certain risks that they are not necessarily aware of, including crimes such as fraud and identify theft. The more time someone spends online, the more opportunities they will have to share information about themselves,” she said.

Thus, never share your password or account numbers over an e-mail or instant message; do not follow links from e-mails when conducting financial transactions; always be wary of callers, pop-ups, websites or e-mails asking for personal information; create secure passwords and change them often; invest in anti-spyware and anti-virus software; and finally, file a report with law enforcement and notify creditors if there is an incident or a suspicion of identity theft.

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