(COLORADO SPRINGS) – Cyber Monday is getting bigger and more extensive by the year.
According to statistics put out by Adobe Analytics, shoppers are expected to spend about $6.6 billion Monday online. The report indicates that this year shoppers are expected to spend about 16% more than last year.
However while people are looking for deals, some could be looking to steal your personal information.According to the IRS, “While shopping for gifts, criminals are shopping for credit card numbers, financial account information, Social Security numbers and other sensitive data that could help them file a fraudulent tax return.”
To be safe, the IRS has posted several hints and tips that should help keep you safe and secure while you shop the day away:
- “Shop at familiar online retailers.” When you visit a website check for the “s” at the end of the “https.” Generally this “s” indicates a site’s safety. Additionally look for the lock icon, “in the browser’s URL bar. Keep in mind that some phishing websites can obtain the “s” security certificate.
- “Avoid unprotected Wi-Fi.” Do not buy or sell items on unprotected Wi-Fi or click on links from strange pop-ups because that may allow thieves to access your information.
- “Learn to recognize and avoid phishing emails that pose as a trusted source such as those from financial institutions or the IRS. These emails may suggest a password is expiring or an account update is needed. The criminal’s goal is to entice users to open a link or attachment. The link may take users to a fake website that will steal usernames and passwords. An attachment may download malware that tracks keystrokes.”
- “Use passwords that are strong, long and unique.” The suggested length for a password is at least 10 characters, but of course the more complicated the more secure. Experts suggest avoiding using different passwords for different accounts and not using a specific word.
- “Use multi-factor authentication.” If available attache text or email alerts to your financial accounts and also require a security check email or text to be sent to your phone for verification.
For more tips from the IRS on how to keep your financial information safe, CLICK HERE.