Staying Safe Through the Holiday Season
In Category: Security Tips
The holidays are here and and it’s time to enjoy good food, quality time with family and friends, and shopping for the best deals on the hottest products for yourself and loved ones. It is also the time of year to tighten up your personal, in-home, and online security.
As the holidays create an influx of travelling and spending, thieves (and cyber-thieves), are just waiting on standby to find gaps in the security systems you have in place.
In this post, you’ll learn how you can continue to have a great holiday without having to worry about the strength of your security system and practices.
For instance, if you have home security cameras installed, now is a great time to check that everything is in working order. A few questions to ask yourself are– Are the cameras properly installed and connected? Are they still facing the areas they were originally set for or do they need to be readjusted? And if you have outdoor cameras installed, make sure they are properly working too. Are they fully covering the areas you want to protect? Is there any dirt or debris covering the lenses? These are all important things to check for that will give you peace of mind during the holidays, especially if you’ll be traveling and leaving your home.
While we’re on the subject of leaving home for the holidays, let’s discuss some quick tips to keep your home secure. As you may remember, a few months ago we published a blog article called 7 Summer Security Tips to Keep You Safe that listed different tips about safeguarding your home while you’re away on a trip.
Those same tips apply here as well. For starters, when planning to go out of town for the holidays be sure to lock all doors and windows. Yes, we know what you’re thinking — “Of course I know to lock my doors!” As much as it seems like a no-brainer, you’d be surprised at how many home burglaries happen because of an unlocked door or window. And if you’re in a two-story home, lock your doors and windows upstairs too.
Another important tip is to tell a trusted neighbor that you will be leaving town. You can ask them to watch over your home while you’re away. You could even ask that they park one of their vehicles in your driveway; that way it looks like someone is home while you’re gone.
Additionally, as tempting as it is in today’s connected world to share everything we do, try to resist posting your holiday trip on social media while you’re away. Share your pictures and updates after you get back.
For more tips on how to keep your home secure while you’re away, visit our previous blog post that we mentioned above.
Lastly, when you’re out shopping in stores this holiday season, whether for food for your Thanksgiving meal, or gifts for loved ones, a good rule of thumb is to pay in cash.
If at all possible, budget what you’re going to spend and then take out the cash. This will not only prevent you from overspending, this will reduce the chance of your credit card information being stolen and becoming another cyber attack victim. These past couple of years have proven just how vulnerable some major retailers are when it comes to cyber security so instead of taking a chance of having your information stolen, just pay cash.
If you’re doing your holiday shopping online, take a moment to make sure the websites are secure and trustworthy. Look to make sure the site is SSL encrypted, your anti-virus software is up to date, and your cookies and cache are cleared. To learn more about how to stay safe online, visit our previous blog posts on cyber security called What You Should Know About Cyber Security and Cybersecurity and You. Just remember, no Black Friday special is worth the hassle of your information being hacked by cyber thieves.
Overall, the holidays are a peaceful time with family and friends. Don’t let holes in your personal, in-home, and online security leave you vulnerable. Enjoy your holidays with a peace of mind.