Cyber Monday: 8 Practical Cybersecurity Tips

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Cyber Monday has become the biggest online shopping day of the year. As the popularity of Cyber Monday grows, so too grow the risks of shopping online. Cybercriminals and fraudsters love Cyber Monday too, and work hard to get rich off the massive number of people engaging in online commerce around the holidays.

While shopping online is usually safe, you should definitely take extra precautions to make sure that you don’t end up handing your credit card data to online cybercriminals.

Here’s some practical Cyber Monday cybersecurity tips:

Shop from a secure computer: The first thing any internet user needs to do, whether you’re shopping or not, is to make sure that your anti-virus software is up-to-date.

Shop using a secure connection. Make sure that your network is secure by password protecting it. This will help prevent a hacker from accessing your Wi-Fi and potentially uncovering your personal information, such as the credit card information you may enter on retailers’ websites.

Don’t shop on public Wi-Fi networks. Always assume public Wi-Fi networks are insecure. Never enter sensitive data (bank account information, credit or debit card details, social security numbers, etc.) when using the Internet on a public Wi-Fi network.

Shop on secure websites. Before you do business with any online vendors, make sure that their site is secure. Make sure you see the letters, “https:” in the address bar indicating that it’s a secure site. You might also see a little padlock symbol in the same line, which also tells you it’s secure.

Use strong passwords. Passwords can be the first and sometimes best line of defense against cybercriminals. It’s important to choose a strong password that has a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Also, use a unique password for each website.

Don’t use debit cards to shop online. If someone steals your debit card information, they could potentially steal everything in your account. Use a credit card instead of a debit card. Or consider using an alternate form of payment that protects you a little more such as an online payment service like PayPal.

Monitor your bank and credit card statements. If you find a transaction that doesn’t match your purchases, your account may have been compromised. If so, contact your bank or card issuer as soon as possible.

Monitor your credit report. Just like your bank and credit card statements, monitor this closely in the weeks following the holidays looking for unusual activity. Identities, however, are far more valuable than credit cards.

Have questions about anti-virus software or network security? Feel free to contact us, we’d be happy to help you out.

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