Holiday shopping is in full force—Tis the season to be shopping, some would say. Unfortunately, during seasonal times such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve, while we are preparing to spend time with family and friends, we must be vigilant when shopping and doing holiday business online. Malicious cyber actors know that e-commerce increases significantly during the holiday seasons, and as a result, they increase their malicious activities where they become laser-focused on stealing money, identities and literally anything that they can monetize.
Fortunately, times have gotten better, and it is harder for cybercriminals to do their harm as compared to, say, the early 2000s. Nonetheless, holiday shoppers who are prudent and who practice safe online shopping habits can reduce their chances of cyber theft.
Here are a few tips online shoppers can use to help safeguard their personal and financial information:
1) Keep your operating system and third-party software up to date
This cannot be said enough. A first line of defense for keeping your information safe is to keep your computers and other devices such as tablets and smartphones updated by applying the latest patches.
2) Use virtual credit cards
Virtual credit cards are provided by various banking and credit card companies. These types of cards might vary in how they work, but in essence, most of them provide a mechanism for linking random credit card numbers to your primary account. For example, a vendor can issue you a virtual card with a card number that can be used once. You then use this card for an online purchase without having to worry about the site storing your primary card information.
Here are links to a few vendors that provide some sort of virtual credit cards.
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from The State of Security authored by Lane Thames. Read the original post at: https://www.tripwire.com/state-of-security/featured/tis-season-prudent-shopper/