Happy Holidays from CISA’s NICCS program!
Cybersecurity is important year-round, but during the holidays there are additional risks to consider. While everyone enjoys preparing and shopping for the festivities this time of year, don’t forget that an increase in online purchases can mean more opportunities for cyber criminals to seek out vulnerabilities.
Last year alone, the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) received reports from almost 13,000 victims reporting cybersecurity scams, resulting over $73 million in losses during last year’s holiday season.
Check out CISA’s holiday shopping tips here as well as our additional cybersecurity suggestions below to help you stay safe while enjoying the holidays this year!
Beware of Seasonal Scams
‘Tis the season for email spam, online coupons, and promo codes! No matter how tempting an offer might be, think before you click. Only use trusted and established online retailers and avoid websites of retailers you’ve never heard of.
Use Secure Wi-Fi
While many of us browse for items online when out and about, remember to only connect to known Wi-Fi networks, especially if browsing in public; beware of network names that have typos, extra characters, or that do not require a password.
Be Safe on Social Media
Be careful not to overshare, don’t post your location in real-time, and review your privacy settings on all platforms. You may be accidentally telling bad actors and cyber criminals when you’re vulnerable or your information is left unprotected.
Check Banking Information
Keep an eye on all activity in your banking and credit card accounts. Also, be sure to monitor your credit report on a regular basis. Being able to verify each purchase will give you peace of mind while shopping from various stores this holiday season.
By following these cybersecurity tips, you can enjoy a safer and more secure holiday season. Stay vigilant and make cybersecurity a part of your holiday preparations to protect your personal information and finances.
Don’t forget to follow us on social media!
- Twitter: @CISAgov, @CISACyber, @CISAJen
- Facebook: Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency
- LinkedIn: Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency
- Instagram: @CISAgov
If you have any questions, please email us at NICCS@hq.dhs.gov for more information.