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12 tips for safer Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping

Hackers will be in full force this holiday shopping season, so defense is vital

During Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2016, consumers should watch out for scams that come through spam, insecure public networks and apps that might seem legitimate but could be taking over your phones and computers, experts say.

Here are a dozen steps you can take to avoid becoming a victim.

  • Only download or buy apps from legitimate app stores.

  • Suspect apps that ask for too many permissions.

  • Check out the reputation of apps and particularly the app publisher.

  • Only enter credit card info on secure shopping portals.

  • Avoid using simple passwords, and use two-factor authentication if you can.

  • Be alert for poisoned search results when using search engines to find products.

  • Don’t install software that sites require before you can shop.

  • Don’t use free pubic Wi-Fi to make purchases.

  • Be suspicious of great deals you learn about via social media or emails and don’t click the links.

  • Turn off location services while shopping to minimize the potential personal data that could be compromised.

  • Make sure the connection to e-commerce sites is secured (HTTPS).

  • Double check the validity of the SSL certificate for the site.

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