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A third of over 55s worried about ID theft

27% think viruses are biggest web threat

More than a third of over 55s say having their ID or bank details stolen is their biggest worry online, says Panda Security.

Research conducted by the security vendor to coincide with Silver Surfers' Day today also revealed that 27 percent of over 55s fear their PCs will become infected by viruses if they venture online, while 12 percent said hackers were the biggest threat on the web.

An estimated 9.2 million over 55s in the UK are currently without internet access. Silver Surfers Day takes place every year in a bid to encourage those senior citizens to become active online, through free training and events.

"The internet is a part of our daily lives and senior citizens, in particular, have much to gain from connecting with friends and family by email or using social networking tools, home shopping or using the web to access the abundance of specialist information that resides there," said Sebastian Zabala, from Panda Security.

"It is nonetheless important that we continue to build awareness of the potential risks and know how to mitigate them. Senior citizens are exposed to a host of threats on the internet, from infection of computers by malware to people trying to lure them into disclosing confidential information like credit card details."

Panda said over 55s worried about their security of the web should not send personal information via email or instant messages as well as ensuring they never download files from 'dubious' sources, to ensure they stay safe online.

See also: Web use makes silver surfers smarter


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