Connecting Older People And Their Families With Link-ages
In their recent research, the BBC Media Literacy Study found that over 53% of people who lack basic digital skills are aged over 65. While this is an alarming statistic it is very much consistent with the research that we conducted while we have been developing Link-ages. The lack of digital skills among older adults can often contribute to social isolation and loneliness, both of which pose a risk to mental and physical health.
Encouraging older people to take their first steps into the digital world can be challenging. Older people may have understandable concerns about their safety online and may be discouraged from using technology by a lack of experience. We wanted to remove some if these barriers by providing a simple, safe and secure platform where all generations of a family could communicate without undue concern for their online security and privacy. Our apps have been developed with inexperienced users in mind, including those with dementia or special educational needs. We firmly believe in privacy by design, so we have made this an integral part of our communication solution and a core value of Link-ages.
Why Privacy By Design
Many of the currently available digital communications apps fail to address the legitimate privacy concerns of inexperienced users. They quite rightly want to feel confident that they can retain control of their data, not be contacted by people they do not know and not be subjected to intrusive ads. Privacy concerns can prevent older adults and inexperienced users from enhancing their lives using the internet and digital devices.
Privacy concerns remain a significant barrier for older adults. Research conducted by Ofcom concluded that older people are likely to feel less confident in knowing how to manage their personal data online. They found that only 47% of people aged 75 and over feel very or fairly confident about managing their personal data. We strongly believe that being older or inexperienced should not mean being excluded. By providing an innovative solution that is built with privacy and security at its core, we have created a platform that older adults and inexperienced users can use with confidence.
Our Link-ages Hub app aims to make inexperienced or less confident users feel excited about learning a valuable skill and empowered that they can be included in the daily digital communication between their family and friends without concerning themselves about their privacy and online safety.