Boxing Day sales pose threat of online scams to Canadians, study finds | PKBNEWS

With the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, retailers expect more in-store shopping for Boxing Day this year

“We’re seeing people coming back to the store, going back to that amazing experience they had before,” said Rémi Sammoun, Territory Manager at Best Buy in Montreal.

Still, some people prefer the convenience of shopping online, and security experts, who fear consumers may not be vigilant, warn that scammers are watching, especially at this time of year.

A recent study by VPN service provider, NordVPN, indicates that nearly 10 million Canadians have fallen victim to online scams.

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Ongoing ‘cybercrime epidemic’ amid pandemic: security expert

The survey which polled more than 8,000 respondents worldwide also suggests that 90% of victims were still willing to give personal data in exchange for some kind of agreement.

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“They would be willing to give a child’s name, would be willing to give their social insurance number, would be willing to provide additional personal details for the opportunity with an additional discount,” explained David Nuti, Vice President principal of Nord Security. North America.

The company said this is information that is not usually necessary for a transaction, but could lead to theft.

According to the study, the biggest priority for respondents was getting the discount, rather than internet security.

“When you’re that time of year and you’re pressed for Boxing Day sales and opportunities, bad actors realize that’s when people make mistakes,” said Nuti to PKBNEWS.

Experts say there are red flags for consumers to watch out for.

For example, if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is.

“You see a high-end clothing brand, for example, that sells for hundreds of dollars per item,” cybersecurity expert and author Terry Cutler explained, “and now all of a sudden they’re discounted. 50, 75%.”

It could be an attempt to trick the consumer into giving up their credit card number or money, he noted.

He and other cybersecurity advocates offer the following advice:

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  • Beware of unusual bargains;
  • Do not click on unknown links;
  • Don’t give out personal information you don’t need;
  • Do not browse using public Wi-Fi; and
  • Shop with reputable retailers.

Above all else, they say, slow down and make safety a priority.

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