Christmas is the perfect breeding ground for Cybercriminals. Mix a dose of stress with some last minute Christmas buying, and voila, you have a recipe that serves the Cybercriminal well.
Take for example that pair of lemon coloured Crocs you’ve been desperate to find for your child. You’ve searched high and low, but they are out of stock everywhere. Everywhere that is, apart from this one store. You can’t believe your luck. Your child will be so happy on Christmas Day. However, weeks later, you are still waiting and waiting and waiting. When you check back, the store seems to have disappeared, along with your dollars.
Or that ipad that you want to buy your partner as a surprise. You search the internet and come across an unbelievably well priced ipad, so much cheaper then all of those well-known retailers. So you click…but never actually get to collect.
The saying “Too good to be true” has never rung more true than with online shopping at this time of the year.
Read our tips below to keep you safe this festive season.
So how do Cybercriminals work?
Here are some of the ways that Cybercriminals operate.
· Setting up fake websites that look completely legitimate.
· Adding fake online reviews.
· Copying Social Media accounts of well-known brands.
· Social media ads that lead you to fake online stores.
· Fake missed delivery notification texts. Scammers send fake text messages claiming that a package you’re waiting for has been delayed or that you need to pay a fee before it can be delivered.
· Gift Card Scams
Top Tips for making sure your Christmas purchases are safe:
Here are some tips from Knowbe4 to make sure what you're buying online is not a fraud in disguise.
Always use reputable retail websites when purchasing online.
If you are visiting a site with auctions or resellers, take the time to review their profiles and ensure they have a history of selling.
If purchasing from a site for the first time, research the organization and look for reviews on social media or online.
Make sure to use a credit card for online purchases and monitor the card regularly for fraudulent activity.
Verify confirmation emails and get tracking numbers for purchases.
Gift Cards Scams:
Gift cards are a huge source of revenue at Christmas Time. Let’s face it, a gift card is a far better present then Aunt Mary’s standard soap set. However, Gift Cards have been the target of a lot of scams in the past few years.
This link here offers some advice on what to avoid with Gift Card Scams.
Whilst it is the season to be jolly, it is also the season to be jolly careful about your online purchases.
Along with the above tips it is very important to keep your device operating systems and antivirus programmes up to date. Talk to the team at GTB about this if you don’t already have this in place.
These few tips could save you money and time over the holiday season.
From us all here at GTB, we wish you a safe and happy Christmas.