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Cyber-security preparations ahead of Amazon Prime Day

Cybercriminals never hesitate to try to take advantage of a big event and Amazon Prime Day is no exception.

With every online interaction during the 48-hour sale beginning July 15, the experts in the security sector are issuing warnings on how to avoid being scammed.

"Increasing Internet traffic to a specific site with the exchange of payment information makes it an easy time for hackers, they know when and where consumers will be and the type of information shared," said Francis Dinha, CEO OpenVPN

E-mail scams are one of the main methods that criminals use to steal information from the unwary at all times of the year, but McAfee reports that the 16Shop identity spoofing kit has already been modified and has been released since May targeting Amazon account holders. The kit first appeared last fall when it was used to persecute Apple customers. The modus operandi has it by sending an email that claims that your account information needs to be updated, but instead sends the victim to a fake site where their information was stolen.

McAfee discovered that it has now been updated with an Amazon logo and text and is perfectly adapted to fool Prime Day buyers.

Rick McElroy, head of security strategy for Carbon Black, outlined three basic steps anyone can take to determine if an email is part of a scam. Regardless of whether the name of the sender seems legitimate, check for spelling and grammar errors, as well as odd URLs; see any request for personal or financial information as a possible red flag; only attachments from a trusted source such as a malicious document can contain malware.

There are also additional dangers via email, third-party product providers and websites. Monique Becenti, SiteLock product and channel specialist, said consumers should know about coupons, gift cards and make sure they go directly to Amazon and not through links. Becenti pointed out that some coupons could, in fact, redirect a victim to a malicious site, one that might seem legitimate, but in fact is set up to steal information.

"When making purchases, it is highly recommended to access the Amazon website directly through the browser, not through your email or a third party, use two-factor authentication, use a credit card when making purchases and do not process your transaction in a public Wi-Fi connection. "she said.

In the same way, local fire departments suggest replacing the batteries in the smoke detectors when the clocks change for summer time, it is also good to use Amazon Prime Day as a reminder to change the password of your account, said Safe Smart Living room. And as an additional security measure, it suggests activating two factor authentication at the same time.

This article was originally published in SC Media US.

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