12 fraud-prevention reminders for the holidays

David Pollino
Posted by David Pollino
Security

It may be the “most wonderful time of the year” for many, but let’s not forget the holiday season is also an active time for scammers and cybercriminals.

holiday_shoppers_wallst_cropAs you shop and spend, be aware so you can help prevent fraud from ruining your holiday enjoyment.  These 12 tips and reminders may be worth reviewing.

  1. Watch out for bogus emails: Fraudsters want you to click on them so they can infect your computer with malware.  Even if an email appears to be from a genuine vendor or brand, contact the business directly to verify the message.
  2. If you receive gifts that have default passwords, make sure you change the password.
  3. Always think before you share on social media.
  4. Clean up your passwords and replace them with strong passwords.  Password managers such as LastPass can make this simpler, as you just need to remember one master password.
  5. Make sure all of your devices are always up to date.
  6. If you are staying in hotels this holiday season, be aware of these possible scams.
  7. Be wary of solicitations from charities – make sure any approach is genuine so your money goes to the right place.
  8. Take care with your personal financial details – never email your banking or credit card details to anyone.
  9. Don’t click on links or attachments in emails unless you are sure they are genuine.  Always go directly to websites you want to visit, rather than using a link.
  10. Got a new device?  Take precautions before dumping the old one; it may have data on it that others will find interesting.
  11. Set up two-factor authentication for financial and retail websites for extra security.
  12. Keep your inbox tidy to make it easier to spot a phishing attempt. Unsubscribe from offers and newsletters you don’t really want.

Of course, these suggestions are relevant all year, so why not make a New Year’s resolution to focus on them for 2017?

Wishing you a happy holiday season! #BeCyberSafe!

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