It’s the most wonderful time of the year for you – and cybercriminals alike. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Life moves fast, the days get short, and we are in a hurry to make the most perfect holiday memories come to life. Unfortunately, this is a recipe fit for cybercriminals hoping to gain access to your personal data. With cyber-crime activity increasing by 30% during the holiday season, we want to take some time to highlight cybersecurity’s best practices. Read Part 1 of 12 Days of Cybersecurity, with Part 2 to follow next week. Also, join our Blue Yonder Live on Dec. 6 at 4 p.m. ET to hear our cybersecurity experts discuss this topic!  

1. Falalala FIFA

The 2022 FIFA World Cup is in full swing! Generally, this is a time to celebrate athleticism and your favorite teams competing for the coveted title of champion. However, while you are enjoying the games, cybercriminals are lurking around the corner waiting for their moment to strike. Viewers are being targeted with malware disguised as harmless applications. Because of this, experts urge fans to be wary of fraudulent emails and cautious of apps you’re downloading to follow the games.

2. Snowflakes and Software Updates

Just like the uniqueness of a snowflake, nearly every software update contains a unique security patch to keep you safe when using mobile devices. To prevent malware and cybercriminals from finding their way onto your devices continue to update your software regularly.

3. Whimsical Wi-Fi

We tend to spend more time out and about enjoying the festivities that come with the holiday season. Because of this, we will often connect to unfamiliar Wi-Fi networks. Remember when you’re connecting to Wi-Fi make sure it is a trusted network and if you are unsure then it’s best to avoid connecting.

4. Pinecones and Passwords

Pinecones serve a greater purpose than festive holiday decor, they act as a layer of protection for developing seeds. Much like pinecones, your passwords are a layer of protection for all of your personal data and it is crucial you are practicing proper password security during the holiday season. Here are some habits you can start adopting now to keep yourself safe as cyber-attacks rise:

  • Use passphrases instead of passwords
  • Incorporate a trusted password manager
  • Don’t share passwords with others
  • Avoid reusing passwords across multiple accounts

5. Silent Social Media Night

Social media has become a way for us to stay in touch with our loved ones across the globe and we utilize it more than ever during the holiday season. What many people don’t realize is cyber-criminals can learn a lot about you based on what you post on your personal accounts. Consider staying a little more silent on social media this year, especially when it comes to posting overly personal information like the following:

  • Names of your pets/children/relatives
  • Year you were born
  • Your alma mater
  • Anything that you may use as an answer to a security question or in a password

6. Festive Financials

It can feel like all we do is spend money during the holiday season, so much so that you may dread checking your bank statement. However, this is the best way to monitor your accounts and discover any fraudulent transactions that you need to notify your banking institution about. Anytime you’re checking your financial accounts remember the following:

  • Only check your accounts over secure Wi-Fi or your cell network
  • Check in a private space where no one can look over your shoulder
  • Consider turning on spending notifications so you receive notifications anytime a charge is made on your account

Secure Holidays to Come

Have a holly, jolly, safe, and secure holiday season. Join us next week for Part 2 as we continue to countdown the 12 Days of Cybersecurity with another set of tips that will help protect you this during the most wonderful time of the year.