Staying safe online during Cyber Monday

Tips on how to protect your personal information while looking for online deals

Posted: Nov 26, 2018 8:29 PM
Updated: Nov 26, 2018 9:12 PM

MASON CITY, Iowa - You may be browsing for special deals on Christmas gifts as part of Cyber Monday. Adobe Insights predicts that shoppers are expected to spend a record $7.8 billion online during this year's Cyber Monday alone, breaking the $6.59 billion record set last year.

However, those online purchases could put you at risk.

According to a survey by ExpressVPN, about 15% of Americans are concerned about cybersecurity when shopping online.

Joelle Kruger and her fiance George have shopped online before, and say if you're in a public place, it's best to use a secure wi-fi connection.

"Use your own personal wi-fi if you can when you're purchasing things. Make sure that the website's you know you can trust like JC Penney or a bigger store, Amazon or Walmart or Target."

George's identity was compromised recently, and says he's being cautious about doing online shopping.

"Even just thinking about...one, in terms of money, and I could spend and shouldn't spend, and then also thinking through the risks that are involved in terms of purchasing things, that's definitely a reason to not be overly eager to get a good deal at the expense of your identity."

Austin Hayes has been a victim of hacking after using PayPal.

"I did the express checkout, I had my information saved on there. And one day, someone got into it, transferred a bunch of money over, got into huge issues with my bank, and it was a big pain just to get that resolved."

It took nearly a month to get everything resolved, and the incident changed the way he saves his personal information on his computer.

"I don't like to leave my information on a website, anywhere almost, even on my emails and passwords, especially my credit card information. I make sure all of that's deleted whenever I'm done. I even clear my history and my data when I'm done with that just to get rid of it and make sure nobody else besides me can see it."

If you're wanting to take advantage of those hot online deals, Hayes says to use common sense.

"If you're scrolling through Instagram or your Twitter or Facebook or anything like that, and you're seeing the advertisements where they're saying 89-95% off, it's most likely a scam to try and lure you to give them your credit card information or they're just not going to give you a product."

Another tip is to look in the address bar at the top of your screen. Look for "https://" at the beginning of a web address, as well as a padlock icon. Those indicate that information sent over that site is encrypted. That process converts data into codes to protect it from hackers.

In addition, if you're shopping from a tablet or smartphone, it's best to shop on a vendor's app instead of a mobile web browser, as a vendor has more control over their own apps.

If someone online uses your information to take money from your account, it's advised you contact your bank or credit card company, replace your card and get a new PIN number, and change the password to whichever online account you were using.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 37624

Reported Deaths: 1503
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Ramsey4805226
Stearns234519
Dakota228690
Anoka2180107
Nobles16626
Olmsted110115
Washington106940
Mower9452
Rice8357
Scott7004
Clay58538
Kandiyohi5701
Wright4565
Blue Earth4532
Todd4002
Carver3641
Lyon3092
Sherburne3075
Freeborn2900
Steele2281
Watonwan2160
Benton2143
St. Louis17715
Martin1635
Nicollet15912
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Goodhue1298
Winona12215
Crow Wing10612
Pine1030
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Otter Tail931
McLeod880
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Unassigned7637
Isanti720
Itasca6412
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Jackson550
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Renville322
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Brown302
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Houston250
Swift211
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Wilkin203
Redwood180
Cass152
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Kanabec141
Koochiching141
Roseau130
Marshall120
Grant100
Lincoln100
Pope100
Mahnomen81
Clearwater70
Hubbard60
Lake60
Traverse50
Lac qui Parle40
Stevens40
Red Lake30
Kittson20
Cook10
Lake of the Woods00

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 30975

Reported Deaths: 720
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk6464179
Woodbury321544
Black Hawk225258
Buena Vista171111
Johnson12648
Dallas126329
Linn126282
Marshall104319
Scott77810
Story7623
Pottawattamie72111
Wapello70630
Dubuque68322
Crawford6772
Muscatine62944
Sioux4630
Tama46229
Wright3801
Louisa36013
Jasper32317
Plymouth3165
Warren2731
Dickinson2642
Washington2369
Webster2132
Hamilton1871
Cerro Gordo1561
Boone1481
Clay1330
Clarke1312
Allamakee1284
Mahaska11517
Shelby1140
Clinton1071
Poweshiek1048
Carroll961
Pocahontas941
Bremer926
Franklin890
Des Moines882
Henry863
Emmet850
Cedar821
Taylor790
Monona760
Cherokee751
Floyd722
Hardin700
Marion700
Guthrie664
Benton651
Sac630
Jefferson590
Osceola590
Jones560
Humboldt541
Butler532
Harrison530
Lee532
Hancock510
Iowa510
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Monroe506
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Clayton433
Lyon410
Palo Alto410
Davis391
Winneshiek380
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Howard350
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Lucas304
Greene290
Jackson290
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Union270
Ida230
Cass220
Appanoose203
Keokuk201
Page200
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Adair150
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