Fake Charities and Other Donation Scams
Nothing is sacred in the minds of scammers. Before you grab your credit card to donante to a charity or non-profit, double check that the group is legitimate, says LifeLock.
Shopping on the Internet
While shopping from your couch is certainly appealing, especially if you hate crowds, there are risks involved. LifeLock suggests shopping only with reputable companies. Check the URL of the site you're buying from, make sure the connections is secure--indicated by the https:// -- 's', meaning secure.
Gift Cards Emptied Before They're Used?
We've all seen the slew of gift cards hanging near check-out lines. Sure, they're a great last-minute gift for the hard to shop for, but be careful. According to LifeLock, thieves can actually skim a gift card's number before money's been added. Instead, opt for a gift card the cashier has behind the counter.
During the holidays, people love sending out electronic cards because of their convenience and usually free price tag. But they do pose some risks. Sometimes, e-cards can be from sites that aren't exactly reputable and could contain malware or spyware, warns LifeLock. Always be sure you know who sent the e-mail and use caution when opening it.
Who's Looking Over Your Shoulder?
While you're waiting in line to check out, be careful not to flash your credit card or driver's license. According to LifeLock, thieves sometimes use their cell phones to take photos of items containing personal and financial information. If you see someone suspicious talking on a mobile phone behind you on line, let them move in front of you or go to a different register, LifeLock suggests.
For those times you need to hit up the ATM for cash during the season, keep an eye out to be sure the machine hasn't been tampered with, says LifeLock, as criminals can attach devices to steal numbers and PINs.
RFID Chips in Credit and Debit Cards
A growing trend in credit card fraud involves those convenient RFID chips commonly found in credit and debit cards, according to LifeLock. Criminals have gotten their hands on technology that can capture credit card information from these chips over the air. LifeLock cautions that consumers should look into buying a protector to prevent this from happening or opt for cards that do not have these chips.
Identity theft makes for a stocking stuffer worse than coal. And with so many consumers pulling out their credit cards this holiday season, it's important they be aware of some of the dangers they face -- and not just the endless lines at stores. Check out these tips from identity theft protection company LifeLock to keep your credit safe.