February 8, 2015

Politchicks.com "Elder Care... Online Safety. Buyer Beware" By Jenny Kefauver

 BUYER BEWARE: Online Dangers Can Be Avoided Using Proper Precautions

"Bud Runion, a classic car enthusiast from the metro Atlanta area, replied to an online advertisement on the popular Craigslist.org touting a classic 1966 Fort Mustang for sale in late January. Several days later, the bodies of Bud and his wife were found in close proximity to the location in which they met the seller, who was arrested in their murders. How could such a benign online inquiry ended in such tragedy?

With over 80 million new classified advertisements per month and nearly 50 million unique monthly users, Craigslist can be a cost-effective alternate to paid advertisements. Created in 1995 by Jim Buckmaster and Craig Newmark, Craigslist started as a way to advertise local events in the San Francisco area and later grew to include non-event postings In more recent years, however, the less savory side of Craigslist has often cropped up in news headlines.

'How do you exercise wisdom when you are shopping online? It comes back to a fundamental understanding of the reality that the internet is anonymous – we need to keep that in mind – you don’t always know that who are communicating with,' says Donna Rice Hughes, President/CEO of Enough is Enough, an organization devoted to educating the public about the dangers of cyberspace and practicing online safety.

Rice Hughes notes that the older generation did not grow up with Internet, cell phones and the technologies immediately available in the 21st century, so they need to be educated on internet wisdom. “We just need to have that internal filter to ask, is this for real?” Rice Hughes says. ”You have ID theft, you’ve got scams, you’ve got people trying to rob you…the point is that anything is being used for good, lawful purposes online….can also be used for harmful intentions.'" Read full article here