Give Yourself the Gift of Secure Shopping

Cyber criminals are getting ready for the holidays. Are you?

The upcoming holiday season is the busiest time of the year for many people. While we finalize our gift lists, cyber criminals plan their attacks. In 2017, more shoppers are expected to purchase presents online than ever before. Follow the tips below to stay safe while shopping online.

Online Shopping Security Tips:

Stick to brands and businesses you know
Not only are major retailers more likely to have a good reputation, they are also more likely to have good security solutions and tools in place to protect customer data. But be aware that hackers can create fake shopping websites that look as good as the real thing, so be careful how you reach a store’s website, and do NOT follow links in e-mails or advertisements without double checking them first.

Access only secure shopping sites
Make sure the site starts with https: (rather than http:), indicating that the website employs SSL to encrypt your personal information distributed online.

Avoid public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi may be cheap and easy to use, but these communications are easily hacked or intercepted by attackers.  Limit the information you share over public connections.

Keep your systems up to date
Having an updated browser, operating system, and antivirus software will help prevent malware from being downloaded if you click on an infected link or e-mail attachment.

Keep track of your money
Check your card account, card activity, and card statements as often as you can during the holiday season for any suspicious or unauthorized purchases. Immediately report any unauthorized activity.

Use the App, not the website
Many major retailers have dedicated mobile apps. These are often more secure than websites as they are less easily spoofed by hackers.

If you suspect you’ve been the victim of a cyber-crime, contact your local law enforcement agency.

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