8 Cyber Security Tips for Christmas and New Years

December is by far the busiest shopping period of the year. We’ve just passed Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but online shopping will still be booming until the big day. Despite the enjoyment of purchasing gifts for friends and loved ones, it is important to stay aware of scams and fraudsters that could ruin your Christmas spirit.

Here are 8 tips to make sure you’re staying secure on your Christmas online shopping:

1. Make sure the site you’re on is secure

a. If there is no ‘https’ at the start of the URL. This is because the ‘s’ stands for secure – without it, your details could be at risk.

2. Beware of Phishing Emails

a. Remember what you’ve purchased and from where. Phishing scams will pretend to be from trusted companies to get you to click on their email links and reveal your personal details. If you come across an email that you think is questionable – go directly to that company’s website and log in from there.

3. Avoid Public Wi-Fi when shopping

a. Hotspots when out and about do seem extremely useful and may save your data allowance, but it is a huge risk to hacks. These networks are extremely weak and vulnerable to hackers, so it’s worth sticking to 4G until you get home.

4. Social Media ‘Freebies’

a. There have been copious amounts of fake accounts suggesting that you like, share and tag friends in order to be entered into a draw to win prizes from big companies such as Ray-bans, Boohoo, and Currys. But be sure to check on the authenticity of the account, does it have the blue tick? If the account doesn’t seem legitimate, don’t share the post or the page as it helps fraudsters gain a wider audience.

5. Read the Description of eBay products before buying

a. So many fraudsters have been uploading products, but in the description, they explain that it is just images of a product instead. This has been a huge issue with purchasing Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 consoles. Make sure you check throughout the listing to understand exactly what they are selling.

6. Be aware of fake customer reviews

a. Many fake or illegitimate companies will pay for fake reviews on their products. These can be found when reviews come without comments or look like they have been copied and pasted, and you should be aware of how often reviews are; if there are loads on one day and not others, it suggests that these are fake!

7. Check for the legitimacy of a website

a. Creating fake websites is an easy process for cyber-criminals. If you’re on a webpage and you think that the deals on there are too good to be true, then they probably are. Be sure to check the URL and be wary of those ending in .net or .org.

8. Turn on Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)

a. This security feature is crucial to knowing when hackers are trying to get into your account, which prevents them from getting in even if they have guessed your password. It is a layer of protection online that is completely simple to set up, yet perfect for your security.

 

And if you’re a victim of scam or hacking, get help – fast! Contact your bank account swiftly to block any purchases and stop any payments. For more information on what to do if you’ve been a victim, visit these helpful websites: https://www.getsafeonline.org/ – https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/

For any more information on how to make sure you have everything in place to keep yourself and your business as protected as possible, email us at web@omicronsolutions.co.uk or call us today on 01727 861 553.

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