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Cyber Security Tips for Safe Holiday Shopping

The holiday season is just around the corner and you might be gearing up for the annual shopping spree. A few years ago, you would be on the prowl for shops offering the best goods with exciting discounts. But times have changed now. Online shopping is the new trend and there are reasons why people prefer shopping online. The number of conveniences attached to it is too good to ignore and unlike malls and stores, you can shop online even during the night.

Cyber SecurityThere is no restriction to the number of goods you can buy and the delivery is free of charge. However, there will be another concern at the back of your mind. It is now an established fact that advertisers track their customers to understand personal preferences and other details. If online miscreants get their hands on that data, the situation can turn very ugly as the tracking data may contain some very sensitive information. To avoid that, here are a few cyber security tips that will help you to shop without being tracked.

Software Upgrades

All the software that you use today has options that upgrade themselves when updates are available. But the situation is so bad that you might lose track of the number of security tools you have installed to protect your online privacy. If any of those outdated tools have security flaws, they are the gateways to hackers and malicious software. So, review all the tools you have installed and make sure that all of them are up to date. Manually update them if you have to.

Be Careful While Buying

When you are shopping online, you might come across deals that are literally too good to be true. For example, there are instances of some miscreants putting up a facade of offering 95% discounts just to get access to your credit card details. These deals are the ones that you need to be wary of. Usually, your security tool tries to warn you when you try to visit these kinds of pages. Don’t ignore such alerts and warnings. The best thing you can do here is to stick to reputed online shopping sites. These sites are safe and they ensure your privacy protection while you are shopping.

Secure Shopping

If you look at the address bar of your browser, the space in which you type the URL of the website, there might be a symbol of lock or even a green box with ‘https’ or ‘secure’ written inside it. This is an indication that the site you are on uses the latest encryption standards and the information exchange between the site and your computer is encrypted. Whenever you visit any site, make sure that the symbol is present.

Try To Avoid Email Links

Most shopping sites send their new offers through emails. Online miscreants take advantage of this fact and design their own fake emails that might compromise your online privacy and security. If you see a good offer in an email, open a secure browser window and type in the URL of the relevant shopping site.

Backup Your Computer

Regularly create a backup of the files on your computer. Although you use the latest antivirus tools in the market, you never know when your computer might get infected. If you have a backup of all the files on your computer, you won’t lose any data even if you have to completely format the hard drive. There are a number of cloud backup services available and you can register at any one of them and use the service. This will also save valuable disk space on your computer.

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