The holidays are a time to rejoice and celebrate with loved ones. Coincidentally, it is the time when both retail shopping is at its highest point and so are cyber-threats and scams. In recent years, online shopping has increased considerably with the introduction of “Cyber Monday” and other incentives. The burden of security falls on retailers but that doesn’t mean that users shouldn’t take precautions to safeguard their assets.
Here are 5 tips to use during the holidays.
1. Don’t shop from your work or school terminal.
2. Shop from a reputable source: Make sure that the retailer is well known and has a secure URL. Ex: (HTTPS://bestbuy.com)
3. Secure WIFI only! If you’re using mobile devices to shop and/or bank, make sure that the WIFI is a secured, known WIFI. Insecure WIFI can pose a threat. Never use open wifi (does not require a passcode); home wifi is the safest option.
4. Beware of Click Bait!: Do not click on advertisement links that will either transfer you to another site or will prompt you to download apps for special offers. These may contain malware, ransomware or other vulnerabilities that can expose your desktop or mobile devices.
5. Be cautious of Holiday parties and invitations which are most common during this time of year. Most invitations are sent out via email, and require the person to complete a form to RSVP. Spoofed invitations is a way for cybercriminals to conceal phishing emails.