5 Tips to Keep Consumer Data Safe During the Christmas Shopping Season

Data, security, and breach are three of the biggest buzzwords in the technology industry. Hearing and seeing of a data breach incites a collective shudder from many consumers. Just the thought of it happening to them is enough to cause worry. What’s even worse? It is all too common to see a headline about a major security breach. Attacks such as these put precious and personal information at risk.

Sadly, many consumers carry an “it won’t happen to me” attitude. The Nilson Report estimated the cost of payment fraud to have exceeded $27 billion in 2017. This number is only going to continue to grow. The odds of it happening to you are staggeringly high. Online shopping has become so mainstream that many consumers are faced with very few alternatives. With the biggest shopping season of the year upon us, I’d say it’s time to take on a more proactive approach. Follow these 5 tips to help protect your data.

Be aware of online security features. Look for websites preceded by “https,” and a small lock to the right of the URL. This means that the information passed between your browser and website is encrypted and cannot be intercepted by third parties. This does not ensure total security but is much safer than websites that do not have such security features.

Whenever you can, use tokenization-based solutions for any transaction. This includes Apple Pay, PayPal, Google Wallet, and other similar programs. It is important to protect all of your online transactions.

Update your passwords often and don’t use searchable personal information to create passwords. Even though using your pet’s name might make it easier for you to remember, it is often the most easily hackable password. Another tip is to avoid using the same password for every account. If a hacker is able to get into one account, they can often break into multiple.

Always monitor your financial accounts and statements to ensure that all activity is legitimate. You should be checking all of your accounts at least once a week to ensure that you can catch payment fraud shortly after it happens. Catching is quickly is the key to avoiding identity theft.

Take all of the steps possible to reduce the connectivity of your data. Log into your Facebook and Instagram accounts and turn off web tracking. Twitter also has the option to turn off data personalization. By turning these setting off, you are ultimately providing hackers with fewer opportunities to access your personal information.

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word: