Summertime and the Online Living is Easy, Yes? Maybe.

By: Andrea Brands
Aug 13, 2015 9:05 AM ET

The Internet has become an integral part of most of our lives. In the summer, we use apps to check the weather, buy outdoor concert tickets and post vacation videos and photos. Getting online has become second nature, and we often don’t think twice, as our fingers tap and swipe. But believe it or not, this worry-free existence is not the norm for everyone. Consider these findings:

  • 21% of internet users have had an email or social networking account compromised or taken over by someone else without permission.
  • Over 40% of teens (13-17 years old) have been bullied online - 25% report it has happened more than once.
  • 43% of teens (13-17 years old) say they have posted something online that they later regretted.
  • 32% of disconnected adults say that they stay offline because accessing the web is too difficult or frustrating, they are physically unable, or they are worried about other issues such as spam, spyware hackers.

These stats show that everyone could benefit from tools and information to help enjoy life online safely and securely.

That’s why we’re launching Digital You -- a new, comprehensive  AT&T program that will offer tools, tips, apps, guidance and community education events for people of all ages and levels of online experience to learn more about how to have a safe and secure online experience. Exploring how to use a smartphone or tablet to guard against identity theft or take a stand against cyberbullying can make navigating cyberspace less daunting and more fulfilling. Digital You also offers resources on accessibility features for those who have difficulties with seeing, hearing, dexterity or concentration.

We’re not doing this alone. Common Sense, The OASIS Institute and many other national and community organizations are teaming up with us to bring the best advice to the most people. And, we’re collaborating with organizations that care about digital literacy, like AARP, National Consumers League, National Cyber Security Alliance, Family Online Safety Institute, National Organization of Black Elected Legislative Women,  League of United Latin American Citizens, The Wireless Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies, iKeepSafe, Call For Action and LGBT Technology Partnership & Institute.

Digital You is designed to help educate and empower people and will include:

  • A new AT&T website ( offering research-based materials about how to use devices safely and effectively for parents, youth, seniors, people with disabilities, and others, with key information in Spanish.
  • Community events led by AT&T employees and community organizations across the country. Training and community discussions will help empower people of all ages to use the mobile Internet safely and constructively.
  • Digital Compass™, a free, interactive gaming platform developed by Common Sense to help teach 6th through 9th graders about the real-world impact of their online choices.

The Internet offers conveniences most couldn’t have dreamed of a generation ago, and it’s not always easy to keep up with the fast pace of change in the digital world. Digital You can help you take advantage of what the Internet has to offer – while also protecting yourself from identity theft, online harassment and scams.  So get your Internet-game on! Check out Digital You at: and #DigitalYou.