The 12 Scams of Christmas: #6
Christmas is a time of giving, of spending time with loved ones, and of celebrating the birth of Christ. This Christmas season, make sure you can focus on the true meaning of Christmas by avoiding scams. Follow along with our 12 Scams of Christmas series to learn more about the most common scams encountered around the holidays and make sure to use browser protection to avoid holiday scams occurring online.
On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: 6 Phishers Phishing
Phishing scams occur when a cybercriminal pretends to be affiliated with another person or company to gain trust and in-turn tricks a victim into providing personal information, like login credentials, financial details, or other information that can be used for financial gain.Phishing scams are ever present and you can learn more about them in our article Phishing Explained: Everything You Need to Know about Phishing.
Several variations of this popular scam make an appearance around the holiday season.
How Do Holiday Phishing Scams Work?
Around the holiday season, it’s common to receive a larger number of emails, especially those related to sales, receipts, and shipping alerts. A typical phishing scam begins with an email where the attacker impersonates a trusted company or organization. The goal is the trick the recipient into believing the email they received is legitimate.
When victims click on the link or file attachment in the email they received, they’re asked to sign in with their email address or username and password, which the attacker then saves. Victims may also be asked to enter their billing information or other information related to an order the attacker claims wasn’t able to be processed. With this information, the attacker gains access to the victim’s accounts or sells the victim’s personal information for financial gain.
Phishing scams occur year round, but during the holiday season, more people fall victim to these scams due to the increase in incoming emails to their inboxes.
How can I protect myself from holiday phishing scams?
Install Browser Protection designed to stop scams before they reach your device. Guardio works directly in your browser to identify and block malicious websites and extensions before criminals have the opportunity to try and trick you.
Always check the URL for any website you visit to ensure that it matches the site you’d expect, BEFORE entering any personal information or login credentials.
Use multi-factor authentication when available. Websites that offer multi-factor authentication offer extra security by making it harder for criminals to access your online accounts even if they have your login credentials.