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How to Avoid Credit Card Fraud This Holiday Season

As the warm weather comes to an end and cold weather comes barreling in, the fast approaching holiday season is on the minds of many. When it comes to gift giving, millions of people opt to browse online from the comfort of their homes. To make the most of your holiday season, many stores offer free shipping, gift wrapping, and exciting online only discounts. However, there are a few precautions you should take to ensure your family’s purchases are conducted in a safe, secure way. Read below for our expert tips!

Sign Up for Transaction Alerts

An easy way to ensure your credit card has not fallen into the wrong hands is to frequently review your transaction history. Skimming through each purchase on a regular basis is a great way to avoid surprises. But, did you know you can also sign up through transaction alerts through several major banks? You’ll instantly receive an email or text whenever suspicious activity is detected. Signing up for these alerts is a great way to avoid a stressful situation!

Be Aware of Social Media Scams

According to Better Business Bureau,  fraudsters are known to advertise exciting discounts via social media or email marketing campaigns. The catch is, after you’ve completed your purchase, the product is never sent to you. On some occasions, the product will be sent but its quality will be subpar or counterfeit. Be sure to independently research the company you are purchasing from to avoid such mistakes. Another way to spot this type of scam is to pay close attention to the website URL. Many of these scammers will create URLs similar to well known stores in an attempt to lend credibility to their stores. 

Avoid Using Public Wi-Fi

As tempting as it can be to use public Wi-Fi while you’re out and about, it is not a secure option for online shopping. These Wi-Fi networks are known to have security breaches and hackers that can easily access your personal data. Some feel safer utilizing a VPN to protect themselves while on a public Wi-Fi network, however, studies show VPNs are not fool proof and you will still be susceptible to cyber attacks.

Turn On Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication is a great way to keep your online accounts secure. Many major retailers office this upgraded security measure when you create your online account. Whenever you login, you’ll be asked to submit a numerical code that is sent to your phone. This extra layer of security allows you peace of mind when it comes to online shopping. Unless the scammer has access to your phone, they’ll be unable to login and use your account to complete purchases.