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Shop online securely this holiday season

The holiday season is fast approaching and more Australian’s than ever are shopping online. The Australian Signals Directorate’s Australian Cyber Security Centre (ASD's ACSC) are reminding Australians to be cyber secure when shopping online.

In the 2021-22 financial year, ASD received over 76,000 reports of cybercrime, a rise of 13% from the previous year. Fraud, online shopping and online banking were the most frequently reported cybercrime types, accounting for 54% of all reports.

There are simple actions you can take to stay secure when shopping online. ASD’s ACSC recommend the following 5 steps.

  1. Shop using secure devices: Make sure the device you use for online shopping has the latest updates installed and is connected to a trusted network. For example, use your home Wi-Fi or cellular data (4G/5G) rather than public Wi-Fi.
  2. Protect your payment information and accounts: Be careful saving payment information to an online shopping account. If you do, turn on multi-factor authentication (MFA) to further protect your information.
  3. Use trusted sellers: Research online shopping websites before you buy and stick to well-known, trusted businesses. Check they have policies for returns and privacy.
  4. Use secure payment methods: Pay by credit card or PayPal to help you minimise the risk of your information being compromised.
  5. Watch out for fake delivery scams: Don’t let your guard down while you’re waiting for your goods to arrive. Cybercriminals can send fake parcel delivery notifications with links that trick you into downloading malware or giving away your personal details.

When shopping online, including on social media, classifieds or online marketplaces, remember cybercriminals routinely create fake websites and social media profiles to try to steal your money or personal information. Slow down, think twice and make sure you know who you are dealing with.

You can use ASD’s ACSC secure online shopping checklist as an easy-to-follow guide while you shop online. If things go wrong, and you think you’ve been a victim of cybercrime make sure you report it via ReportCyber or call the Australian Cyber Security Hotline 1300 CYBER1 (1300 292 371).

Find out more about shopping online securely.

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