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6 Tips for Avoiding Cybercrime During the Holidays

This guest post is brought to you by Scantron Technology Solutions, Tribute's Best in Practice solution partner for hardware, installation, monitoring, and on-site service.  Scantron has the expertise necessary to keep your organization running smoothly.


Holiday retail sales are expected to climb over $800 billion in the United States during the 2021 holiday season. With this surge in holiday spending for consumers comes a rise in overall holiday traffic in stores and online businesses. Just as you ramp up your holiday spending and online shopping, cybercriminals are increasing their efforts to lure you into their traps.

Scantron Technology Solutions works with businesses to help spot bad actors, be diligent in spotting potential cybercriminal activity, and ramp up the first line of defense – employee education. Here are some simple tips for avoiding cybercrime during the holiday season. This blog will review six cyber security tips for you and your business to consider this holiday season. 

For you:

  1. Closely Monitor Your Email:  As daily deals come into your inbox, make sure they come from companies you know. Look at both the from name and the email to ensure it is coming from a good source—only open attachments from trusted sources and scan attachments for viruses if possible.  
  2. Look for Shopper Fraud: Regularly review your statements to make sure all of the charges are legitimate. And when you are shopping, if the deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. You can always contact a company’s customer service to verify the offer or check their website for any online deals.  
  3. Use Strong Passwords: Use a combination of upper and lowercase letters, including numbers and special symbols. Never share your passwords, and avoid using common words or phrases. Don’t use the same password across platforms; use passwords unique to a specific site.    

For your business:

  1. Check and Update Your Plans:  Now is a perfect time of year to make sure your business continuity plan, incident response plan, and disaster recovery plans are all up to date. Can you execute the plans, and will your business continue functioning in the event of a cyber-attack? This holiday season is a fantastic time to make sure you have a specific cyber plan to respond to any incidents.
  2. Protect Against Ransomware: Employees may use their work computer to shop online or open personal email resulting in a data compromise. Know who has access and where your critical data is stored to ensure the proper security measures are in place to protect your critical data. The goal is to avoid giving hackers access to your corporate network and company devices.
  3. Watch for Social Engineering: If you get an email from another employee asking you to complete a task out of the ordinary, double-check with them. Bad actors often rely on the manager-to-employee relationships to ask for jobs to be completed like wire transfers, gift card purchases, or disclosing private company information.  

As you head into this holiday season, remain vigilant in your online activities. Take the extra time to review and update your actions, so you can spend the holidays enjoying the festivities, not falling victim to seasonal scams.   

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