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BlackFriday: recommendations to buy online safely

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The season of promotions is coming so also the search for the best deals. In this context, ESET, a leading company in proactive threat detection, warns of the growth that online purchases have had and also the frauds that take advantage of this situation, since cybercriminals do not miss the opportunity that these dates represent to launch Malicious campaigns that seek from compromising computers with malware to stealing confidential data to commit identity fraud or sell information on the dark web.

“Fortunately, users can reduce the chances of falling for scams or being victims of information theft, being aware that fraud will be circulating. This requires that we have a good dose of caution and that we reinforce the security of our devices keeping in mind some good security practices. ”, Mentions Camilo Gutiérrez Amaya, Head of the Research Laboratory of ESET Latin America.

From ESET they share the following recommendations to buy online:

· Connect safely: The first thing to keep in mind when shopping online is to use a secure Internet connection. It is best to limit online purchases to safe and familiar Internet connections, whether it is mobile data or through your home Wi-Fi network. To keep your home network safe, the first step is to modify the security settings of the router from the time it was installed.

Because there are many risks associated with public Wi-Fi networks, when carrying out any type of operation that involves entering confidential data, such as payment information, it is preferable to avoid them. If despite these recommendations you still want to buy by connecting to a public network, it is key to make sure you use a virtual private network (VPN) when connecting to protect traffic and make purchases safely.

· Secure devices: As purchases are likely to be made from a smartphone, security should be a no-brainer. However, a significant number of people still consider their smartphone to be just a phone and not a pocket computer that is carried every day and used to carry out all kinds of tasks. That said, many underestimate the amount of personal data stored on their devices, ranging from photos and personal information to payment cards stored in their e-wallets that they use to pay for their purchases.

Therefore, these devices must also be protected. This is where a reputable security solution comes in, as these types of technologies are very well suited to protect devices against all types of malware, as well as to protect against malicious activities carried out by threat actors, such as they can be phishing attacks or sending malicious links. You should also consider protecting the device with screen displays.

lock that combines biometric lock and passphrases.

· Protect payments: You should also consider protecting the payment methods you choose to use through a reliable security solution on the device. Well-equipped solutions typically have a payment protection feature that adds an extra layer of protection for your banking and payment applications. This protects against any scammer who tries to intercept your payment information, be it in the form of phishing campaigns or other threats.

This payment protection feature will protect both banking and payment applications against malicious applications that may have infected a device, and also prevent them from replacing information or reading information from the screen of a protected application. In addition, thanks to this function, applications that the user considers should be protected by this additional layer of security can be added. Another supplemental security feature that should be used whenever a payment is involved is two-step authentication, preferably using an authentication app or a security token.

· Avoid scams: Dates like BlackFriday or CyberMonday are usually full of offers of all kinds and it is a time when buyers are more attentive than ever to offers. However, it should not be overlooked that it is also the favorite time of year for scammers who rely on consumers to let their guard down. However, one thing that stands the test of time is the often-repeated rule that says: if something sounds too good to be true, it usually isn’t.

So when you come across annoying ads or sites full of pop-up ads that offer 90% discounts for luxury brands, you should probably avoid them. By clicking on them, the user may be redirected to a fake website or in which the identity of a recognized brand is impersonated to try to collect confidential information, including payment information, or that it leads to download malware on the device. Either way, the only one who will get a bargain will be the scammer. To avoid falling victim to these types of scams, the best option is to limit yourself to legitimate stores and authorized platforms that can be trusted.

In conclusion, ESET recommends that while looking for the best offer you remain vigilant in and do not lower your guard. Pay attention to the most common signs that allow us to identify that we are facing a scam, such as poorly written ads and dubious stores that may seem real at first glance, but once they are examined carefully you can realize that they are false.

And don’t forget to apply other fundamental practices of what is known as cyber hygiene, such as keeping your device and operating systems up to date with the latest security patches, having your devices protected with built-in security features and security software, using passphrases. and enable two-factor authentication. All this could make the shopping season safer and more enjoyable and significantly reduce the chances of suffering a headache caused by a scam. ”, Concludes Gutiérrez Amaya, Head of the Research Laboratory at ESET Latin America.

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