How to keep yourself safe online this holiday season

11/13/2017 - SALT LAKE CITY, Utah(ABC4 News) The holidays are here, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday coming up, it's important to know how to stay safe while hunting for those bargains online. Cybersecurity expert Robert Jorgensen from Utah Valley University, joined Brian Carlson to share how to protect yourself.

Jorgensen says this time of year is so popular for criminals, because people get so wrapped up in trying to find a great deal, they often don't stop to think about what they are doing. Shoppers are also concerned about getting the rights gifts in time, and this can make them more careless. Criminals take advantage of this.

While there are some great deals out there, watch out for those that look too good to be true. Make sure you buy from well known retailers. Likewise, online classified ads are a great place for criminals to set up shop this time of year. Hot toys and electronics can be counterfeits, or in some cases, you may send money or something you never get.

Jorgensen says this is a great time of year for email phishing. A notice from a credit card company or an online store that an order has been denied is a powerful way to get people to click on links. If you get an email like that, go directly to the store or financial institution website and log in there.

Keep an eye on your online store accounts, watch your credit cards for unknown charges, and think twice before sending money to someone you don't know.

The UVU cybersecurity team competed this weekend in the National Information Assurance Training and Education Center Invitational Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition. They competed against 15 other teams. Utah Valley University's cybersecurity team took first place on Saturday. 

Go to UVU.edu for more information.


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