Online fraudsters target festival shoppers

Thu 02 Dec 2021, 19:29:57
It is that time of the year, once again, when the pandemic is forcing many to turn to online shopping portals to buy and send gifts to their dear ones. And this is also that time, which cybercrooks have been waiting for so that they can trick festival shoppers into clicking on malicious links and stealing their data or cash.

The situation, which has been getting worse since many people depend on online shopping due to the pandemic, has seen several cybercrime agencies across the globe issuing repeated warnings for shoppers. While similar warnings were issued ahead of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping events, the warnings now are aimed at the Christmas and New Year shopping habits.

According to these agencies, one common tactic used by the crooks was fake websites of popular portals. The fake ones imitate the real very closely and advertise items at cheaper prices to entice victims. In most cases, the victim never receives the item they paid for. One of the most important things agencies stressed was research. Looking for online reviews of the website or person you are buying from and checking the seller’s feedback history were primary but crucial precautionary measures.

Agencies like UK’s Action Fraud also suggest a strong, separate password for the email account you use for online shopping.

“Criminals can use your email to access other online accounts, such as those you use for online shopping. You should also enable two-factor authentication (2FA), where possible, which gives your online account additional protection by double-checking that you really are the person you claim to be when logging in,” an advisory from Action Fraud said.

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