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?
- Buy only from retailers that store them in locked cases and check the cases for tampering
- If you must buy them online, get them directly from the retailer’s website and don’t follow any unknown links to “special deals”
- 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!