Shop Safe During Cyber Monday
As Cyber Monday approaches and consumers are anxiously awaiting those amazing online deals, it would be wise to take certain safeguards to protect your bank accounts from scammers and thieves that prey on holiday shoppers. Read below for some helpful tips on how to keep your bank account and identity safe while still allowing you to enjoy those great deals Cyber Monday has to offer.
- If you’re planning on shopping during Cyber Monday it is a good idea to do research on the companies you plan on making purchases from beforehand. Avoid hurrying through the purchase process and stick to shopping from companies/retailers that are trustworthy
- As the age-old saying goes, if it seems too good to be true, it most likely is. Many cyber attackers will take advantage of this time to create fake ads to lure customers into giving their personal and banking information. While shopping online remember that almost anyone can create ads and that they are not always from legitimate sellers and retailers.
- Keep your software up-to-date. Whether planning on doing your Cyber Monday shopping on your computer, smartphone, or tablet, having the latest software can ensure you have the most up-to-date security features. Having antivirus software and anti spyware software installed is a good safety measure as well.
- Be sure to have strong passwords. Avoid using single word passwords and try to keep your passwords unique between different accounts. You can use password generators and password managers to help you keep your passwords secure.
- Avoid shopping from a free public Wi-Fi connection. It might be tempting to be looking at deals while you are traveling and not on a secure connection. If you can avoid it don’t do your Cyber Monday shopping from coffee shops, airports, libraries, or any other place that offers a free wi-fi connection.
- Don’t be surprised if you start to receive unsolicited emails around the holidays especially around Cyber Monday. Phishing scams are one of the most common ways thieves will try to steal your personal information. Avoid clicking on links that might promise large discounts and instead shop directly from trusted company websites.
As technology advances so does the avenue for cybercriminals to target new unsuspecting shoppers. You might be familiar with the term credit card skimming which has been used at gas pumps and other kiosk types to steal your credit or debit card information. Hackers have also gone digital with credit card skimming and can now do the same harm while you’re online shopping. Some things you can do to protect yourself include:
- Do not save your credit card information on retail websites.
- Using third party payment methods ie. Google Pay Send, Apple Pay
- Disable international purchases on your credit cards
- Enable purchase alerts on your credit cards