Cybercriminals are Shopping for Information

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and so is Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Shoppers begin their hunt for discounted treasures on Thanksgiving Day, shopping in store and online deals until the following Monday.


According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), Black Friday and Cyber Monday are some of the busiest shopping days of the year as consumers browse and buy online, in stores and, increasingly, on smartphones and other mobile devices.


Shopping online has its benefits in that it helps you avoid the crowds, long lines, and the overall stress of purchasing in stores. However, as you shop online for your next purchase, be aware cybercriminals could also be shopping for your personal information.


Geek Insider recommends you take the following precautions when shopping online:

  1. Avoid using debit cards
    • Credit cards have great consumer protection. If your card is hacked or stolen, it is easier to report it and avoid the costs of unauthorized purchases.
  2. Be aware of fake sites and vendors
    • Fake vendors will create fake e-commerce sites to steal your personal information and harvest your card information. They advertise the items on their site but will never make deliveries.
  3. Do not log on to public Wi-fi
    • Using unsecured Wi-fi to shop online makes you vulnerable to identity theft. Hackers could use your personal information to impersonate you and make unauthorized purchases.
  4. Only use data encrypted websites
    • Use data encryption to keep your information secure when visiting websites. Websites without data encryption could be susceptible to cyber-attacks, so make sure the URL begins with HTTPS instead of HTTP.
  5. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
    • A VPN encryption will disguise your identity online and protect you on public networks.


Now that you’re equipped with the knowledge to protect yourself from cybercriminals, enjoy your shopping experience!



Geek Insider Staff. “7 Online Shopping Security Threats and How to Avoid Them.” 11 January 2022. –


National Retail Federation. “6 Things to Know about the 2022 Holiday Shopping Season.” 30 September 2022. – ttps://


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