How to Stay Safe from Black Friday and Cyber Monday Scams

How to Stay Safe from Black Friday and Cyber Monday Scams

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are undoubtedly some of the most exciting times of the year for shoppers. With fantastic deals and discounts, it’s the perfect opportunity to snag those items you’ve had your eye on. However, it’s also prime time for cybercriminals looking to exploit the shopping frenzy. To ensure a safe and enjoyable shopping experience, here are some tips on how to protect yourself from Black Friday and Cyber Monday scams brought to you by UKRFCU.

1. Stick to Reputable Retailers

When hunting for deals, shopping from reputable, well-known retailers is crucial. Stick to websites and stores you trust, and avoid unknown or suspicious websites offering unbelievable discounts. Scammers often create fake websites that mimic popular stores, so it’s essential to do your research before making a purchase.

2. Use Secure Payment Methods

Always use secure payment methods like credit cards or PayPal when shopping online. These payment options offer an extra layer of protection in case of fraud. Avoid using wire transfers or prepaid debit cards, as they can be riskier and harder to trace in case of fraudulent transactions.

3. Watch Out for Phishing Emails

Cybercriminals often use email to trick shoppers into revealing personal and financial information. Be cautious of unsolicited emails offering unbelievable deals or requiring you to click on suspicious links. If an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. Delete these emails and avoid clicking on any links within them.

4. Use Strong Passwords

Before making online purchases, secure your accounts with strong, unique passwords. A combination of letters, numbers, and special characters will make it more difficult for hackers to access your accounts. Consider using a password manager to keep track of your login information.

5. Enable Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security to your online accounts. Enable 2FA wherever possible, especially on your financial and shopping accounts. It typically involves receiving a one-time code on your mobile device, making accessing your accounts significantly more challenging for cybercriminals.

6. Be Cautious with Pop-Up Ads

During the holiday shopping season, you may encounter numerous pop-up ads and banner advertisements. Be cautious when clicking on these ads, as some may lead to fake websites or initiate downloads of malicious software. Stick to known, trusted websites for your shopping.

7. Update Your Devices and Software

Ensure your devices, operating systems, and browsers are updated with the latest security patches. Cybercriminals often exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software to gain access to your data. Regular updates help protect your information from potential threats.

8. Monitor Your Accounts

After making purchases, regularly monitor your bank and credit card statements. Report any unauthorized or suspicious transactions to your financial institution immediately. The sooner you identify and report any issues, the better your chance of resolving them swiftly.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are excellent opportunities to find fantastic deals and kickstart your holiday shopping. However, it’s crucial to stay vigilant and protect yourself from scams and fraud. By following these safety tips, you can ensure a secure and enjoyable shopping experience this holiday season.
At UKRFCU, we value your security and financial well-being. If you ever have concerns about your accounts or online safety, please call us for assistance. Happy shopping, and stay safe this Black Friday and Cyber Monday!

**No one from UKRFCU will call you requesting your personal or account information. If someone does call and asks for this information or you are suspicious of the call, ask for their name and extension, and tell them you will call them back. Call our number (215) 725-4430 or our toll-free number is 888-POLTAVA.
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