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Smart Living | How to

How to | 04 Dec 2020

How not to lose £775 to online fraudsters this Christmas

Six essential behaviours can help prevent you from falling prey to online shopping fraud.

There were 17,405 cases of online shopping fraud in England and Wales during the Christmas period in 2019, with the average incident costing the victim £775.

The statistics, covering the period from November 2019 to January 2020, come from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau on the launch of the Cyber Aware campaign, which Vodafone supports.

Cyber Aware, backed by organisations such as the Home Office and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), offers online shoppers advice on how to protect their online accounts and devices.

The six essential behaviours are:

  1. Use a strong password for your email, one that isn’t used for anything else.
  2. Create strong passwords using three random words.
  3. Save your passwords in your web browser. Most modern web browsers, such as Google Chrome and Apple Safari, can do this.
  4. Turn on two-factor authentication (2FA) for your online accounts. This provides an extra layer of security – the NCSC has instructions on how to do so for several popular online services.
  5. Update your devices and apps.
  6. Back up your data.

Cyber Aware is also supported by Asos and Microsoft, with the latter pointing out that using 2FA can stop 99.9% of attacks from compromising your online accounts.

Lindy Cameron, Chief Executive of the NCSC, said: “Scammers stole millions from internet shoppers last Christmas – but by following our advice, you can protect yourself from the majority of their crimes.

“We hope the Cyber Aware campaign helps people to shop confidently online and enjoy their Christmas.”

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