eSafety resources helping older Australians stay connected this Christmas

By Shannon Jenkins

December 14, 2020


The commonwealth’s online safety agency is encouraging Australians to help their older loved ones stay connected during the festive season with a range of new resources.

As some people may choose to gift their older family members a device so they can safely celebrate from a distance this Christmas, eSafety commissioner Julie Inman Grant has noted that only 30% of older Australians with low digital literacy can make video calls.

“Giving an older relative a device will start them off on a really empowering journey but it’s also critical to help them gain the skills to use the web safely,” she said on Monday.

“These can make being ‘face-to-face’ at Christmas possible across state borders or even internationally.”

eSafety has developed a number of free resources to assist older Australians with gaining the confidence and skills they need to use their device.

The Get Started app, available on the App Store and Google Play, offers a step-by-step process to help people get their older family members and friends online.

Meanwhile, the commission’s Be Connected website contains more than 150 online learning modules and 350 learning activities on topics such as how to get started with a device, using the internet, and how to use video calling app Zoom.

“One third of older Australians have never used social media but the holiday period is the perfect time for them to use one of the platforms to enjoy the festive cheer with family and friends,” Inman Grant said.

Read more: eSafety Commissioner wins global award for government innovation


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