I gave up my car not long ago and needed to call my automobile insurance company to cancel the policy. Having misdialed, I found myself talking to a bot. It asked numerous questions–everything from my age to whether I owned my home. By the fifth question, I realized I’d stumbled into a rogue operation and hung up. My second attempt at dialing fared better. Even so, my misstep reminded me of the many traps scammers set to catch the unwary. These days, calling for a hair appointment can be dangerous.
I have a few rules I’ve created for myself to stay out of trouble. Generally, I say “no” to unsolicited opportunities. I never pick up the phone unless I recognize the caller. Instead, I wait for the message. I’ve found these defenses to be a good as a Norman wall.
As we’re coming to the end of another hectic year, I was delighted to find the December edition of the AARP Bulletin offered more advice about security. It reminded me, for example, that it was time to check my credit report.
Another piece of good advice was to make copies of important cards in my wallet. Recently, I received a new Medicare card. I need to update that information for my records.
A privacy checkup on Facebook is worth reviewing too. Others wishing to do the same should go to the downward arrow button in the upper right-hand corner of their Facebook page. Click Settings on Privacy and Privacy Checkup. Follow the instructions to learn how open or restrictive your information can be.
For New Year, I’m resolving to manage my emails better. I’m going to “block sender,” or mark as “span” unwanted communications. Being a female, I don’t need much information about erectile dysfunction.
Page 37 of the AARP Bulletin threw me for a loop, I confess. “Don’t send nude pictures of yourself over the internet,” it advised. At 84, I laughed. Still, I’m not the final arbiter of good sense. Some of us remain young at heart at any age. Even so, I intend to follow the advice. I consider it a mercy to others.