ALBUQUERQUE — Wednesday, David L. Cohen, Comcast Corporation’s Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer; New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas; and Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller announced a new Internet Essentials partnership to educate seniors, parents, and children across New Mexico about some of the most serious challenges they may face online.
This innovative, multi-dimensional effort will combine public service announcements, free in-person training programs, and free educational resources including videos, brochures, and booklets that will also be made available online.
“As New Mexico’s chief law enforcement, I am urging New Mexicans to take advantage of these free resources to help protect themselves against online threats and scams,” Balderas said. “New Mexicans, especially our senior citizens, are far too often victims of financial scams so I am thankful to Comcast, the City of Albuquerque, Teeniors and Adelante for this partnership to protect New Mexico children and families.”
The action comes on the heels of a recent announcement from the Federal Trade Commission that estimated scammers extracted more than $1 billion from Americans last year alone. More than $240 million of that total occurred either online or via email. Seniors in particular are disproportionately affected because many lack the skills and savvy to protect themselves from online fraud.
“As a media and technology company, Comcast is uniquely positioned to contribute to this effort,” added Cohen. “We also know that one of the major reasons why low-income households, and especially seniors, don’t purchase internet service at home is because they’re afraid of it. They’re afraid of online scams and of being taken advantage of. Fortunately, as part of our Internet Essentials program, we have an outstanding network of nonprofit partners in whom we can invest to teach more seniors, adults, and students that the internet can be perfectly safe once you know how to use it and what to watch out for.”
Comcast also announced it was providing grants to two nonprofits that specialize in Internet safety education and research including:
- Teeniors – A training organization that provides one-on-one coaching from tech-savvy teens and young adults to empower seniors, will provide specialized one-on-one coaching to seniors in and around the Albuquerque metro area as well as Santa Fe.
- Adelante – Through their expertise operating the senior meal program in Dona Ana County, Adelante will engage low-income seniors at the Mesilla Community Center, offering specialized online safety and cyber security training.
At the event today, Cohen announced Comcast would provide in-kind contributions to support a Public Service Announcement across New Mexico that will reach hundreds of thousands of residents and help raise awareness about Internet safety issues for seniors, families, and their children.
In addition, Comcast announced it would print and distribute for free 10,000 copies of “A Senior’s Guide to Online Safety,” written by Larry Magid, president and CEO of ConnectSafely.org and founder of SafeKids.com. The senior guide was developed and released last year at an Internet Essentials event for seniors in San Francisco. The Company will also add new content to and links from its online Internet Essentials Learning Portal, www.InternetEssentials.com/Learning, where seniors and adults can find and access all of these internet safety materials and more.
“Our goal at Teeniors is to empower older adults to connect with their loved ones, engage with their communities—and the world—through technology. With Comcast as a partner, we now have a fantastic opportunity to reach even more people and help motivate more inclusion than ever before. This is a huge win for digital literacy in New Mexico,” Teeniors Founder Trish Lopez said.
Since 2011, Internet Essentials, Comcast’s signature community impact program and the nation’s largest and most successful broadband adoption initiative for low-income families, has connected more than four million low-income Americans, living in more than one million households, to the Internet. The number includes 88,000 residents across the state of New Mexico, nearly 56,000 from the city of Albuquerque alone.
About Internet Essentials
Internet Essentials from Comcast is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive high-speed Internet adoption program for low-income Americans. It provides low-cost high-speed Internet service for $9.95 a month plus tax; the option to purchase an Internet-ready computer for under $150; and multiple options to access free digital literacy training in print, online and in person. For more information, or to apply for the program, visit www.InternetEssentials.com or call 1.855.846.8376. Spanish-only speakers should call 1.855.765.6995.
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is one of the nation’s largest video, high-speed Internet, and phone providers to residential customers under the XFINITY brand, and also provides these services to businesses. It also provides wireless and security and automation services to residential customers under the XFINITY brand. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures and Universal Parks and Resorts. Visit www.comcastcorporation.com for more information.