Black Friday Scams and how to avoid them

Published on: 17th November 2022

It’s that time of the year again where we all prepare to score some discount deals during the world’s biggest shopping event – Black Friday! While businesses have already started flashing their deals, cybercriminals are also preparing to cash in! The sad reality is that in today’s digital world, no one is immune from data theft – not even your favourite retailer. Consumers have as much of a responsibility to practice cybersecurity as their retailors. Every day there is a new exploit or vulnerability, and the security landscape is changing all the time. Phishing attacks increase by as much as 336% around Black Friday, which means customers are more at risk to email, text and social media scams than ever before.

Threats to look out for include:

  • Fly-by-night online stores: many consumers fall victim to this because there are many fake online stores that pop up and disappear with consumers’ money. Shop at stores you are familiar with and those that have an established reputation.
  • Double check the URL: these days cybercriminals even fake retailer websites and make them look almost the same. Fake website addresses are usually off by a character or two, so make sure that you are on the write website and that the spelling is correct.
  • Deals too good to be true: though you are likely to get the best deals during this time, tread carefully, especially around links and emailed gift cards that appear to be too good to be true.
  • Phishing: this is when cyber criminals gain access to your credentials. During Black Friday and even the festive season, you may start to get bombarded with emails asking you to click through links or open attachments of amazing deals. If this is not from your regular newsletter, or from a company with whom you have shared your, rather stay safe than sorry, and don’t share your personal information in return for any vouchers, prizes, or even gift cards.

WASPA’s Managing Executive, shares some tips and tricks to stay safe during Black Friday.

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