Keep Your Holiday Cheer and Avoid the 12 Scams of the Holidays
The holidays are just around the corner and amid the hustle and bustle 70%1 of us will fire up our devices to shop for gifts, make travel plans and spread cheer. But while we’re getting festive, the cybercriminals are getting ready to take advantage of the influx of online shopping and activities to spread scams intended to stead your identity, invade your privacy or cause financial loss. Make sure you avoid these 12 scams:
- 1. Phony E-tailers
Phony sites try to lure you into typing in your credit card and personal details by promoting great deals. Now they have your money and information, and you never receive anything.
- 2. Malicious Mobile Apps
Be careful when downloading apps, as you could download a malicious app designed to steal your information or charges to your phone bill.
- 3. Travel Scams
Phony travel web pages with beautiful pictures and too-good-to-be-true deals are used to get you to hand over your financial details.
- 4. Holiday Spam/Phishing
You’ll soon be seeing cheap Rolex watches and pharmaceuticals advertised as the “perfect gift” for that special someone.
- 5. iPhone 5, iPad and Hot Holiday Gift Scams
Cybercrooks will use great deals on hot holiday gifts in phony contests and phishing emails as a way get you to reveal personal information or click on a link that could download malicious software to your PC.
- 6. Skype Message Scare
Be wary of instant messages with the line “Lol is this your new profile pic?” as when you click the link, your PC is infected their machine, and your files could be held for ransom.
- 7. Bogus Gift Cards
Cybercriminals can’t help but want to get in on the action by offering bogus gift cards online. Be wary of buying gift cards from third parties and buy directly from the retailer.
- 8. Holiday SMiShing
Using text messages, scammers try to lure you into revealing personal information by pretending to be a legitimate organization.
- 9. Social Media Scams
Beware of ads and postings for phony contests, and “stay at home” jobs from your Facebook and Twitter “friends.”
- 10. Fake Charities
In this season of giving, the bad guys are hoping to get in on the giving by sending spam emails advertising fake charities.
- 11. Dangerous E-cards
E-cards are popular way to send a quick “thank you” or holiday greeting, but some may contain spyware or viruses that download onto your computer once you click to view the greeting.
- 12. Phony Classifieds
Beware of phony offers that ask for too much personal information or to wire funds via Western Union, since these are most likely scams.
THANKS TO MARY McGINNIS FOR SUBMITTING THIS