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The good news is the tide is turning, and more seniors are using cell phonesa€“and even smartphonesa€“than ever. Herea€™s the bad news: They dona€™t tend to be very concerned about security while using such devices.
Could this be a disaster waiting to happen?AARP Survey Regarding Seniors and Cell Phone SecurityThis issue was recently driven into the spotlight thanks to a cell phone survey by AARP. Conducted in September 2014, the survey revealed that among Americans aged 50 and older who own cell phones, 44 percent dona€™t protect them with passwords or passcodes.
Considering that the rate of people aged 18 to 49 who dona€™t use such security measures is 33 percent, ita€™s plain to see that seniors lag significantly behind in this regard.Tech Use Rising Among SeniorsPerhaps the lack of concern about security wouldna€™t be too troubling if most seniors didna€™t bother with the devices in the first place.
However, numerous surveys recently have revealed that cell phone adoption and use are on the rise among senior citizens.

Nielsen, for instance, found that 60 percent of cell phone users aged 55 and older owned a smartphone in the last quarter of 2014, which is a 13-percent increase over the same period in 2013.Pew Research Center recently took a look at technology use and adoption among senior citizens. While the study doesna€™t specifically look at senior citizen cell phone security, it does shed light on how quickly seniors are beginning to use these devices.For the study, Pew surveyed senior citizens aged 65 and older.
59 percent reported that they go online, which is a 6-percent increase in just one yeara€™s time. 77 percent have cell phones, which is a major uptick from April 2012, when just 69 percent did.Interestingly enough, the Pew study found that seniors fall into two groups when it comes to technology use.
These seniors tend to have positive attitudes about online technologies, and they tend to own lots of high-tech devices.The second group mostly consists of older, less affluent senior citizens. Many face disability and health issues, and they report that they feel disconnected both psychologically and physically from modern technologies.Leta€™s take a closer look at what the survey revealed. Among seniors with annual household incomes of $75,000 or more, a whopping 90 percent go online, and 82 percent have broadband at home. Among those with annual incomes of $30,000 or less, only 39 percent go online, and only 22 percent have broadband.Education matters too. Among senior citizens with college degrees, 87 percent go online, and 76 percent have broadband.
Only 40 percent of seniors without degrees go online, and only 27 percent have broadband.The Pew study also reveals a major disparity regarding cell phone use versus smartphone use. Only 18 percent of older adults have smartphones versus 53 percent of the general population.

Only 10 percent of seniors aged 75 to 79 own cell phones; for those aged 80 or older, cell phone ownership drops to just 5 percent. The AARP study regarding senior citizens and cell phone security may provide a basic answer: Older people are scared about making mistakes or getting into trouble with such devices.
Sadly, the AARP survey could make them even more reluctant to use the devices.Pew did look at some of the reasons seniors are reluctant to use technology. More importantly, the finder wona€™t be able to access personally identifiable information.Be on the lookout for phishing. Just like on a computer, use caution with unsolicited emails, text messages, downloads and the like.Use a a€?find my phonea€? app. If a smartphone is misplaced, this type of appa€“which is built right into iPhonesa€“will help you track it down.Be careful with public Wi-Fi. However, the importance of security while using such devices should be emphasized by seniorsa€™ loved ones. Ultimate Tub's Privacy Policy governs the submission and handling of this data.Find Out More!

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