Hackers, no hacking! Cyber Monday safety guide

KNWA

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — Millions of people will shop deals online this Cyber Monday, but there are a few things you’re going to want to keep in mind.

This year, sales are expected to be about 19% above last year’s sales, making it a good day for people with bad intentions. There are a couple of things you can do to protect your sensitive information while shopping.

  • Be on the lookout for fake websites. There are some sites that can look legitimate, but if you look closely at the web name, it may be spelled incorrectly. Double-check before putting in your information.
  • Be wary of emails advertising deals. Don’t open links that look like they came from retailers because they can lead to fake sites. Instead, go straight to the retail site.
  • Change your passwords. Hackers are able often able to access accounts because people use the same password for everything. A strong password:
    • Has at least 15 characters
    • Is a mixture of lower and uppercase letters
    • Uses symbols
    • Doesn’t use any personal information

Washington County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, Kevin Metcalf said following these tips can help protect the sensitive information that is valuable to online criminals.

“It’s almost like a mosaic,” Metcalf said. “I can start piecing together your life. And it’s not only your life. It’s also the life of your children, your parents, your grandparents, aunts, uncles, your close friends.”

Metcalf suggested using password managers to create and store passwords. Lastpass.com, Bitwarden.com, and Keypass.info are just a few options.

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