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Browse terms by selecting a letter. If you’re on a desktop, you can search for specific words with this keyboard shortcut: Ctrl+F (Windows) or Command+F (Mac), then type your search query. Have a suggestion for a new term? Take our survey!



The fifth generation of mobile networks (wireless technology), following from previous generations: 2G, 3G and 4G. It offers much faster connection speeds, more reliability with lower response times and greater capacity than previous generations.


Address bar

Where you type in a web address to go to a website or web page.

Anti-virus software

A software program that sets up a firewall to prevent viruses from entering your device. Most anti-virus software now also includes malware removal programs.


Software that can only run on mobile devices such as an Android phone or tablet, iPhone, or iPad. An app is a small software program which performs a specific task, helping you to “do things.”

Apple App Store

Apple’s official store for downloading apps for devices that run the Apple operating system (iOS) for iPh ones and iPads. The App Store contains millions of apps, many of which are free to download, while others cost money. You must sign in to your Apple ID to use the App Store.

Artificial intelligence (A.I.)

Relies on machine learning and algorithms. It takes data and finds patterns. Generative A.I., like Chat GPT, can scan data from across the internet, process it, and produce something close to what humans can. The full implications of the power of A.I. are still unknown.

Augmented reality

Enhances your surroundings by adding digital information to what you see.


Back button

A button in your browser which allows you to go “back” to the previous webpage.


Stands for “blind carbon copy.” When you Bcc someone on an email, you are sending them a copy of the email message, but no one else will see that you did.


Technology that allows devices to communicate with each other without wires.

Bookmark button

A button in your browser which allows you to “bookmark” or “save” a webpage for easy access later.


A software program that allows a computer user to access and visit websites and surf the internet.

Browser history

The list of web pages an internet user has visited within a specific web browser.


Case sensitive

When a computer treats an upper-case letter (like the letter ‘A’) as a separate letter than a lower-case letter. Passwords are often case sensitive.


Stands for “carbon copy.” When you Cc someone on an email, you are sending them a copy of the email message.


An internet browser developed by Google, Inc.


A network of computer servers that store data remotely so that it can be accessed from any device with an internet connection.


Piece of information that is stored in someone’s web browser to help web pages load more quickly.


Direct message

A private message from someone, usually sent over a social media platform. Social media offer many ways to communicate. Direct messages differ from public posts in that they are sent back and forth between 2 individuals or groups and are not visible to others on the platform.


Transfer bits of data from the internet to your computer, tablet, or other internet-connected device.


Remote-controlled helicopter with the ability to capture sound and video. Drones come in many different sizes, shapes, and capabilities.



Short for electronic mail. Email gives people the ability to send messages instantly to people all over the world.

Email address

The address people use to send you emails. Your email address is the equivalent of your mailing address (for snail mail).

Email newsletter

A newsletter sent via email to a list of subscribers.


A small digital image or smiley face used in digital communications to express emotion. The first emojis were created in Japan.



An internet browser developed by the Mozilla company.


Sends an email you have received from one person to another person.

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(Pronounced /ɡɪf/, as in gift) Stands for “graphic interface format” and technically refers to a file format used for storing and sending graphic files, but now popularly refers to animated images that can be added to digital communications.


The world’s most popular search engine.

Google Play Store

Google’s official store for downloading apps for devices that run the Android operating system. The Play Store contains millions of apps, many of which are free to download, while others cost money. You must sign in to your Google Account to use the Play Store.



The main page or starting page of a website.



The place where all new emails arrive, and where emails are stored.

Internet of Things

A giant network for connected devices, an example of which is when you use your smartphone to control additional internet-connected devices.



The specific words you use to formulate your search question.


Magnifying glass

The universal symbol for online search.


Malicious software that damages systems and causes data loss on an infected device. Some examples include viruses, trojans, worms, spyware, ransomware, etc.

Malware removal program

A software program or app that removes malware from your device. You can schedule routine scans or scan your device on-demand.


An image or a combination of text and image that is usually funny and is shared widely on the internet.

Microsoft Edge

An internet browser developed by Microsoft. The Microsoft Edge browser is installed by default on all Microsoft computers, and tablets (like the Microsoft surface).

Multi-factor Authentication (MFA)

A multi-step account log in or verification process that requires the user to give a password AND another log in credential (usually through a code sent via text or email to an additional device) before accessing the account.


Operating system

The software that runs a computer. Examples include Windows, MacOS (for Apple computers), iOS (for iPhones), and Android (for Android smartphones).



A malicious email that tries to collect personal information from you.


A small window that suddenly appears on your screen. It can be an ad on the internet or a dialog box with information from the program your computer is running.

Pop-up blocker

An extension on your web browser that blocks pop-ups.

Profile (social media)

Your profile consists of the public-facing information you share about yourself on social media. It usually consists of your name or user handle, a picture, and some personal info, such as a short bio, your likes, hobbies, etc.


QR Code

QR stands for “quick response.” It’s a square barcode that opens a web page, document, or other file when scanned with a smartphone camera. You may see QR codes on restaurant menus, business cards, or electronic boarding passes.



Sends an email to only the sender of an email.

Reply all

Sends an email to all recipients of an email.

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An internet browser developed by Apple. Installed by default on all Apple computers, iPhones, and iPads.

Search bar

The box in your browser where you type in key words to do a web search.

Search engine

A program that searches the web and finds what you are looking for.


A malicious text message (or SMS) that tries to collect personal information from you.


Electronic junk mail.

Sponsored content

Paid content on a website that is basically an advertisement but is created to blend in with the rest of the content on the page.


The process by which digital content is transmitted continuously to your device. This allows you to watch or listen to music, movies, news, etc in real time when connected to the internet.


Join a mailing list by giving an organization your email address.



Remove your email address from a mailing list.


Transferring bits of data from computer, tablet, or other internet-connected device to the internet in order to share with others.


Stands for Uniform Resource Locator and is a unique location on the internet, also called a web address. Each web page has its own URL.


A unique name that you use for online account credentials. Along with a password, this gives you access to the website or platform.


Video chat

Uses a video camera and a microphone to chat in real time with someone over the internet. Video chat is one of the cheapest, easiest, and most useful ways to “chat” with someone over long distances. FaceTime, Google Meet, Skype, Zoom are examples of free, popular video chat services.

Virtual reality

Creates an immersive, interactive environment for you to explore.


A form of malware.


Web address

A unique location on the internet. Each webpage has its own web address. Also known as URL.

Web page

A page of a website.

Web search

A search for information on the internet.


A collection of related web pages, grouped together.

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