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Fear of technology

Many older Australians have fears about going online. They are reluctant to engage with technology because of security concerns and a lack of skills.
Security concerns

  • Vulnerability of devices to hacking: 72% internet user versus 66% non-internet user
  • Details being stolen when buying online: 55% internet user versus 62% non-internet user
  • The legitimacy of online stores: 55% internet user versus 54% non-internet user
  • Knowing if received emails are genuine: 54% internet user versus 47% non-internet user
  • Online banking not being secure: 52% internet user versus 66% non-internet user

Real online experiences

45% reported experiences with viruses, scams, or credit card and personal information theft.

  • 47% of 50 to 69 year olds
  • 40% of 70+ year olds

The general fears undermining confidence (for those with no or low digital literacy)

  • Hackers and privacy compromised
  • Performing unfamiliar tasks
  • Breaking ‘something’ and incurring additional costs to fix the ‘damage’
  • Burdening family for help
  • The stress of contacting online support
  • Losing face when asking for help 

Source: Research commissioned by eSafety, May to June 2017.

Respondents comprised 3,602 adults aged 50 years and over in Australia

More findings from this research

Last updated: 11/11/2021