3 tips to avoid gift card fraud 0 244

Gift card

If you’re thinking of going for gift cards this festive season, there are a couple of steps you can take to make sure that you avoid the risks of gift card fraud.

As anything with a digital component, a gift card offers an avenue for cyber criminals to take advantage of unsuspecting organisations and customers.

What kind of gift card fraud should you be weary of?

  • Gift cards linked to bank accounts – the linked bank account can be attacked

Starbucks encountered a gift card incident in which the auto-load feature on cards that allowed fraudsters to drain attached bank accounts.

  • Stealing of gift card numbers and cloning cards – this applies to gift cards that do not have an extra level of protection such as a pin code
  • Bulk acquisition of gift card numbers through methods such phishing,or an accidental disclosure

Woolworth’s Australia – an employee accidentally emailed a spreadsheet with 8,000 gift card numbers, totaling AUS $1.3 million, to over 1000 people.

What can you do to avoid gift card fraud?

  1. Buy only from retailers that store them in locked cases and check the cases for tampering
  2. If you must buy them online, get them directly from the retailer’s website and don’t follow any unknown links to “special deals”
  3. Only buy cards that require PINs for purchases for an extra layer of security

For more tips on how to stay safe and secure while shopping, check out our blog post: Black Friday Cyber Monday – Stop … Look … Think!


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Security trends to look out for in 2018 0 247

After a turbulent 2017 with Cyber Security making regular headlines, looking ahead to the coming year, there will no doubt be further discussions about the threat landscape.

Ransomware Revolution  – Ransomware of Things

Technological advances and their accelerated use have led to a number of scenarios considered unlikely just few years prior, are now within the realm of possibility. The advice going into 2018 from ESET researchers is to back up everything that matters to you, often, by keeping at least some backups offline – to media that aren’t routinely exposed to corruption by ransomware and other malware – in a physically secure location. As the Internet of Unnecessarily Networked Things becomes less avoidable, the attack surface increases, with networked devices and sensors embedded into unexpected items and contexts: from routers to fridges to smart meters, from TVs to toys, from power stations to petrol stations and pacemakers. As everything gets ‘smarter’, the number of services that might be disrupted by malware becomes greater.

Criminals following the money

With data being the most valuable asset, ransomware is set to remain in great demand among cybercriminals. It is important to note that many ransomware attacks are not sophisticated enough or never intended to recover the victim’s data once the ransom has been paid. For these reasons we suggest not only backing up of data online and offline but also implementing proper security measures such as proactively training staff on what phishing emails entail and how to avoid clicking on them and entering any credentials.

Critical infrastructure attacks on the rise

Cyber attacks on the Ukrainian power companies resulted in electricity service being turned off in hundreds of thousands of homes. The implications of this for future attacks of this kind include more than just the power grid but also includes critical manufacturing and food production, water and transport and the defence and healthcare sectors.

Safer for all

This year has seen ESET’s malware analysts continue to help law enforcement crack down on malicious campaigns and, by extension, the criminals spewing them. We are confident that 2018 will bring further successful investigations as we will continue to lend a hand to authorities so that, ultimately, the internet can become a safer place for everyone – except cybercriminals.

Download the full Security Trends 2018 report here

ESET’s top 5 tips for safe online shopping this festive season 0 288

safe online shopping

Holiday shopping is so quick and easy to do online, no traffic to get to the store, no waiting in queues or travelling to one specific shop just to find out – oh no, they’re out of stock of the one item you went there for.

We want to make sure your holiday shopping experience is quick, easy and most of all safe. Here are our top 5 tips for safe shopping this festive season:

  1. Don’t have the same passwords for all online shopping sites, have strong passwords and for extra security, change them before the holiday shopping commences.
  2. Only shop on trusted sites and directly from vendors.
  3. Don’t click on links from emails, instead go straight to the site on your browser.
  4.  When shopping online use a secure internet connection such as your home WiFi and make sure the necessary firewalls are in place – Avoid online payments via public WiFi.
  5. This coupled with a strong antivirus and/or anti-spyware software for scanning email, applications, and data that resides on your computer, you can rest assured that only you will catch or detect any form of intrusion in good time.

To find out how ESET can help secure your online shopping experience visit our website or contact us at sales@esetafrica.com