The holiday scam season is comming

Not unlike retailers, cyber-criminals are getting ready for Black Friday, which marks the beggining of the holiday season in the United States. Gullible consumers are at great risk of getting cheated.

“The holiday season in general is a huge time for hackers … Black Friday is typically the start,” said Paul Henry, vice president of strategic accounts for Secure Computing. He also said that he is most concerned about web-borne malware attacks. Consumers should meet seemingly incredible deals with great suspicion: as the saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn't.

Quite possibly the most popular scam is to pick a very popular product and offer a great deal on it by email. This may end in the hackers getting your credit card details and, possibly, having malware downloaded on your computer.

“Be leery of sites being advertised [in e-mail that might be spam]. In all likelihood you're being directed to a malware-connected site. Do not click on URLs within e-mails even for well-known public sites,” Henry says. Hiding the true URL is a trivial task for hackers.

According to CyberSource, the amount of money lost to fraudsters in relation to e-commerce have made up more than $3.6 billion in the US alone, largely due to growing sales. Christmas and tax-filling season are two most dangerous times in terms of cyber-crime.

Not even legitimate websites should be fully trusted since hackers inject code into Web pages redirecting users to malicious sites.