June 2012

Got a Video Game System? Then You’ve Got Parental Controls

If you’ve got kids, it’s likely you also have video games — played on a game console, like an Xbox, Wii, or PlayStation, or on a handheld gaming device.

If so, there’s something else you have: parental controls. They’re already built into many game systems. You just have to use them. Parental controls help you make sure your kids play according to your rules, whether it’s limiting which kinds of games they can play or keeping them from accessing online features.

To Forward or Not to Forward

That is the question. In fact, it’s one of the most common questions we hear from OnGuardOnline.gov visitors.

Email etiquette is important – not only for the sake of your personal and professional relationships, but for your computer’s security, too. Here are a few tips to help:

How Can You Help Older Americans Avoid Fraud? Talk About It.

Today is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, a day to learn the signs of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Yesterday, I participated in a day-long symposium at the White House on the role that financial exploitation plays in the wider problem of elder abuse.

Lessons from a Controversial App

In the mood for love, or just after a one-night stand? [This app] puts you in control! Reveal the hottest nightspots, who’s in them, and how to reach them . . .”

“Browse photos of lovely local ladies and tap their thumbnail to find out more about them.”

“[This app] is a revolutionary new city scanner app than [sic] turns your town into a dating paradise!”

- The pitch from a controversial app

Many people join online dating services. But recently, a controversial mobile app created profiles of men and women, many of whom didn’t know their information – including their location – was being shared by an app advertised as a “dating paradise” for finding “love.” The app created profiles of these men and women by collecting information that was publicly available through foursquare and Facebook – like location, photos, and contact information -- and presenting it in a context that many people found surprising, and even disturbing. Users of the app were able to scan their surrounding area to view the profiles of men and women who were nearby, even though many of those men and women never signed-up to be a part of the service. 

Blog Topic: Be Smart Online

Don't Take It From Us...

When it comes to advice about online dating scams, you could listen to OnGuardOnline.gov. We have advice to help you protect yourself and your money. 

But why not go straight to the source, too? Many online dating sites now offer really practical advice on how to avoid relationship scams.

Coordinating Voluntary Efforts to Fight Botnets

Over the past several years, a new threat has emerged on the Internet, increasingly putting consumers at risk. Some industry experts suggest that as many as 1 in 10 computers in the U.S. are part of what is called a botnet.