Thames Valley Police Cyber Monday Warning

28 November 2016, 07:21

The Thames Valley force are issuing advice to encourage us to think about security and safety while shopping online for ‘Cyber Monday’.

Figures released last month show £10.9 billion was lost to fraud, including cyber crime, in the UK last year. That's around £210 per person over the age of 16.

During the festive season, there is around a 40% rise in financial loss to individuals and businesses as a result of online fraud according to Get Safe Online.

Here are Thames Valley Police's top tips for online shopping:

  • Trust your instincts – if an offer does not seem genuine, do not take the risk.
  • Stick to trusted websites – look for a green padlock symbol in the web address bar and ‘https’ instead of ‘http’. Fake websites are a way of gaining access to your bank details so make sure online retailers are genuine before making a purchase.
  • Make sure you have strong passwords and use a different password for each website/account you use.
  • Be wary of clicking on links in emails that could take you to a scam website.
  • If are using a public WiFi connection, avoid entering your personal or payment details to make an online purchase.
  • Keep electronic records of your purchases and check your bank statements for any unauthorised transactions.
  • Make sure that you have installed the most recent version of your operating system (for example, Windows) and that you have up-to-date anti-virus and firewall software installed.
  • Think about using a credit card or PayPal to pay for your transactions to offer added security and only use payment methods offered by the website, rather than bank transfers.
  • Use payment verifications such as ‘Verified by Visa’.