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Help with online life

The coronavirus crisis has seen a large shift to online life from shopping to maintaining social contact with friends. Below is some information for getting started on Facebook plus general advice and resources for spotting and avoiding bogus emails and scams.

Please note that Quinton Methodist Church cannot accept responsibility for information provided on third party websites.

A beginner’s guide to Facebook

With traditional face-to-face contact currently severely curtailed, internet-based social media has come into its own for maintaining social contact with others outside of the home.

If you would like to connect with friends and family via Facebook, but are not confident about setting up an account or using it, then this short Methodist Church How to get started on Facebook guide will help get you up and running.

Useful notes on common concerns including privacy settings and a comprehensive glossary of terms are included in the guide.

Protecting yourself when online

A whole raft of information about protecting your privacy and avoiding online scams and fraud can be found on the Get Safe Online website.

Bogus emails: spot the fraudsters

Email is a frequent method used by online fraudsters to trick innocent people out of their money or their identity – or both – and the coronavirus pandemic has prompted criminals to increase their online activities. This activity is commonly referred to as ‘phishing’.

Download this handy guide for using email safely and securely by Get Safe Online to help you spot online fraudsters’ tactics and keep alert to these threats.

Beware of Scams

In these difficult times criminals are taking advantage of people’s heightened anxieties and vulnerabilities to expand their activities. The many and various means they use to defraud and exploit their victims include bogus websites, emails and text messages, the telephone and calling at the door.

Fraudsters present themselves in many ways. Posing as Government or other officials, offering services or medical supplies or pretending to be collecting for charities are just a few of their methods; while modern technology provides a means for them to present in a very convincing and plausible manner.

Scam Awareness Fortnight is an annual initiative organised by Citizens Advice. You can find more information on the Citizens Advice check if something might be a scam page.

There is useful general advice on Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council’s scam awareness fortnight page along with a means of reporting suspected scams for those who live within the borough.

Online entertainment

There is a wealth of easily accessible entertainment on the web via services such as YouTube, the Spotify music service plus live-streamed programming and catch-up services from the BBC amongst many others.

Many thousands of radio stations stream their content world-wide; if you have a particular musical taste not catered for by regular terrestrial radio it is highly likely you will find an online station that fits the bill. One UK-based station that may be of interest to those who remember Saga Radio in the West Midlands, or miss ‘old-style’ Radio 2, is easy-listening station Serenade Radio which features several of the presenters from Saga Radio plus other familiar names once heard on BBC local radio.