With Mother’s Day just around the corner, cybercriminals are working up ways to take advantage of this time when you’re online looking to buy flowers, candies, perfumes, jewelry or whatever gifts for mom might be hot this year. Phishersfollow a similar editorial calendar as newspaper and magazine editors, coordinating their attacks around holidays and the change in seasons. They also capitalize on significant events and natural disasters.
They are trying to get you to click links that will either infect your PC with malware, or visit a website that offers you too good to be true deals on gifts for mom. If you download malware from a bad link, everything you type into your computer could be recorded by the cybercriminal, you could be unknowingly sending them your personal information, or the malware could render your machine useless. Entering your personal and credit card information on a fake site could results in charges on your card, never receiving the item you “purchased, “ and even the possibility of new cards opened in your name.
To help make this Mother’s Day enjoyable for you and your mom, make sure to follow these steps when shopping online:
Be wary of offers that are too good to be true—the usually are.
Always be suspicious when you receive an email or text message from a company asking for personal information—legitimate companies do not ask for personal information in emails or texts
Don’t click on a link in emails, texts, or chats from someone you don’t know
To ensure you’re visiting the correct site, type the store site URL into your browser’s address bar or use a safe search plug-in, like McAfee® SiteAdvisor® , that comes with McAfee® All Access, and shows you in your browser search results if a site is safe or not.
Use comprehensive security software on all your devices that includes anti-spam and malware protection.
Make sure you protect yourself so you don’t get your credit card maxed out and then go crying to your mom on Mother’s Day.
Robert Siciliano is an Online Security Expert to McAfee. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Mobile was Hacked! (Disclosures)