How Can I Protect My Credit Card Data And Identity During The Holidays?
This time of year is peak season for credit card and identity thieves and with more and more consumers (94%) stating they will be taking advantage of online shopping this Cyber Monday, it is safe to say there will be plenty of opportunities for theft this holiday season.
How to protect yourself
No matter how cautious you are, there is always a risk that your confidential information will end up in the wrong hands. There are some simple tips to reduce the likely-hood that this happens:
- Always verify the shopping site is secured. This is a very critical yet easy step to help protect your information. Always ensure the start of the web address is “https” and not “http” before entering in any information. All the major retailers should have this but do not assume all online stores do.
- Keep a close eye on bank and credit card accounts. Log into your online accounts regularly throughout the season to ensure all transactions are legitimate. You can also go one step further and subscribe to a credit monitoring service that can track new accounts and send text message alerts.
- Utilize security features built in to your accounts. Many credit card providers have tools that help protect against fraudulent charges. You can set spending limits or put other thresholds in place and get notified via text if they are exceeded.
- Ensure email promotions are legitimate. It is pretty certain that you have seen an increase in deals and promotions in your inbox. Try to always go to the website directly instead of clicking on the links in the email to avoid being redirected to a false website.
- Hold off on shopping if on a public WiFi connection. Try to keep your shopping and other online activities to a minimum when on a public WiFi connection.
Most importantly during this holiday season, keep a pulse on all accounts for all members in the household and be cautious when cashing in on all the holiday deals. Remember, if it is too good to be true, it probably is a scam.