Australians are encouraged to be cautious and protect themselves online, particularly over the busy holiday season.
The Australian Cyber Security Centre reports that they receive one cybercrime report every ten minutes from individuals and businesses. The most common being, identity theft, online fraud, shopping scams, online romance scams and business email compromise.
Cybercriminals are active over the holiday season and there is a spike in online fraud and scam activity. This year, the ACSC’s Stay Smart Online program, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s Scamwatch, the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner are working together to raise awareness and help Australian shoppers stay safe this holiday season. This includes knowing how to spot a fake online store, paying securely, considering the safety of tech gifts, and being aware of what personal information is shared online.
There are many steps that can be taken to help keep your details save this holiday. Making sure you use strong but different passwords to keep details on accounts safe. Direct bank transfer or other unusual methods like cryptocurrencies should be avoided, as this is a common way scams are conducted.
Cybercriminals set up fake online shopping sites or send messages that look real to trick online shoppers into buying things that never arrive, and to deceive people into providing personal details.
Australians should also be cautious about new or unknown retail websites and other suspicious messages requesting personal information or payment. Providing personal information can lead to other cybercrimes using stolen identities.