Tis The Season To Be Scammed!

Online Cyber Risk Management

The season of cyber scams is upon us! At JMP we wanted to help our clients keep on top of their cyber security at work and home!

SUPPLY CHAIN CHAOS

Supply chain chaos has been the unofficial theme of 2021 and caused us all countless nightmares. From container ships stuck in canals to shortages of fruit pickers and lorry drivers – it’s been impossible to avoid hearing about the weaknesses in the supply chain this year.

Whilst we can hope for post-pandemic and Brexit improvements a threat that is not going away is cyber scams. A number of high profile cyber incidents have hit the news recently. Including Walkers where a software upgrade has almost halted production for more than a week!

For our US friends, Chicago-based Ferrara Candy Co which produces holiday favourites such as candy corn was hit by a ransomware attack that disrupted production just in time for Halloween!

Let’s hope none of our Christmas picks falls victim to the same sort of foul play!

A robust cyber risk management strategy including cyber insurance can ensure that your business is agile enough to recover from any seasonal cyber woes!

STAY SAFE SHOPPING ONLINE

As we storm right through Black Friday and Cyber Monday fake websites and phishing emails are going to become unavoidable. This is the time of year we are all looking to find the best bargains and presents for our loved ones and so it is the perfect opportunity for cybercriminals to use the momentum. Data from Action Fraud revealed that 28,049 victims lost a total of £15.4m to online shopping fraud during last year’s festive shopping season.

Pauline Smith, Director of Action Fraud, said: ‘Christmas is an incredibly busy time for us all. Sadly, criminals will see this is as an ideal opportunity to take advantage of shoppers who are caught up in the excitement of securing a bargain online.’

Surprisingly last Black Friday it was not the older generation who fell victim to scammers. The highest percentage of reports (27 per cent) came from 20 to 29-year-olds and over two thirds (68 per cent) of victims were aged 20 to 49 years old!

Over this period we can often feel overcome with marketing messages from our favourite brands. They are offering extra special unmissable deals but it is important to take a step back to make sure everything is as it seems and they are not in fact another cyber scams. Cybercriminals use the trust these brands have earned to trick unsuspecting customers by creating websites that look identical to the real brand. Any items you purchase will unfortunately never be delivered.

Another way these convincing fakes can be used is to harvest your credentials. You can land on a perfectly legitimate login page and cheerfully enter your details before you realise anything is wrong. How many different sites do you use the same password for? It’s easy to see this sort of scam can give cybercriminals access to a wealth of your data beyond just your online shopping.

OUR TIPS TO STAY SAFE

• Use secure payment methods! Use a credit card if you can. When making purchases over £100 and up to £30,000 you receive protection under Section 75 of the Credit Consumer Act.

• Never trust an offer that seems too good to be true!

• Access a brand’s website by typing it into your browser rather than clicking on links in unsolicited emails.

• Use multi-factor authentication if offered.

• ALWAYS remember to log out

• Read online reviews to check sellers are genuine if they are unfamiliar to you.

Cybercrime is big business and these organisations run their own campaigns parallel to our favourite brands and to take advantage of our best customers excitement.

If you’re not to be trifled with and want help to stop them from making a Christmas pudding make sure you are cyber safe in and out of the office this festive season. Contact one of our cyber insurance experts on 01242 898387.

 

Sources

https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/onlineshopping

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leicestershire-59090278

https://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-ferrara-candy-company-hack-halloween-20211019-zzkf5vz7kjdxbcepuvofxha3fy-story.html

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