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Tutor Tip of the Month

Web Literacy Tips

The World Wide Web is an amazing place. If using computers is new for your learner, he or she may be finding it a treasure trove. Like so many treasures, however, using prudent practices helps to ensure finding it safely.

Some important tips to keep in mind when surfing the web:

1. Be careful about providing personal information. Make sure you are providing it to a recognizable company, organization, or governmental body and that you know why it is needed and how it will be used. If you are not comfortable providing it, don’t. See if there is another way to make the order, such as by phoning.

2. Using social networking sites, like MySpace and Facebook, can be fun was to keep in touch with friends and make new online contacts. Consider what information you provide, however. Once the information is posted, it is still in the web, even after you delete it from your page.

3. Do not post your address, phone number, age, social security number, or other personal information to a public web site or to anything that looks suspicious. If you are providing any of this information to a web site you know, make sure the web site is secure. You can tell because the web browser should have a locked padlock at the bottom and the URL should be https, rather than http.

4. Keep passwords private. Experts recommend making them strong and hard to guess by making passwords at least 8 characters long and including a number and symbol. For example: Liter_acy3
 
For more tips, check out this page compiled by PBS Kids. It has information for all ages to remember: http://pbskids.org/privacy/literacytips.html. Safe Kids also provides a list of things children and youth should never provide online: http://www.safekids.com/kidsrules.htm

For tips on holiday shopping safety, Stay Safe Online, a nonprofit organization, provides guidelines: http://www.staysafeonline.org/basics/shoppingTips.html


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