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Compliance Training Blog

Security is everyone's responsibility

Happy Holidays with Safe Cyber Habits

This holiday season as you give and receive, make sure you stay aware of security best practices. This is not a time to let your guard down because this is when people are most vulnerable and attackers are aware of this.

Phishing “Gift cards”

If you receive a gift card from a “friend” via email (which could definitely be legitimate as many companies including Amazon have this type of delivery), don’t automatically click the link and assume it is true. Contact your friend (the sender) directly (not replying to the email, but using their personal email address you have on file or by calling them) to verify that this is from them and is legitimate. If for some reason the sender wanted to remain anonymous, do not click the links in the email.

Enter the URL to the company manually in a separate window. Then go to the gift card section of the page and enter in the code. You could also call the company (the number listed on their trusted website, not the number in the email), and verify the legitimacy of this gift card. Attackers use this in phishing attacks. They create fake gifts and fake links that look legitimate. They require you to enter in information to “redeem your gift,” then they use that information as pre-text for attacks, or they infect you as soon as you click the link. Don’t fall for this trap.

Fake Rewards

During this holiday season, many companies send out coupons, offers and freebies. Be cautious, however, because attackers know this and pose as companies offering fake rewards. These offers are enticing since they may seem to come from a store you frequent or are in the mailing list for.

Don’t fall for it. Again, check directly with the trusted company to ensure the said offer is from them.

In Conclusion

Enjoy the holidays, but be a smart giver and receiver.


Target Shoppers: Your Card may have Been Compromised. What Should you Do?

Target shoppers were recently told that there was a payment card information security breach involving as many as 40 million shoppers. This could affect shoppers to Target who made credit or debit card purchases in their U.S. stores from Nov. 27 to Dec. 15, 2013 (read Target’s statement here). Here we share some potential threats and security best practices.

Some potential security threats for victims:

  • Stolen credit card information
  • Identity theft
  • Unauthorized charges
  • Unauthorized debit withdrawals
  • Stolen personally identifiable information
  • Compromised PIN

Security Awareness: What should you do if you fall into one of the potential victims?

1. Cancel the card. Call the card company and find out if there were any transactions that need to be disputed. (Even if your card wasn’t compromised, why take the chance?)
2. Dispute any charges that were not authorized.
3. Get a new card issued with a new number.
4. Change your PIN - Do not use the same PIN you had for your previous card.
5. Change your verification information: your secret questions and answers.
6. If you use the same PIN or secret questions for other cards, change those as well. As a best practice you should never use the same PIN or security questions for multiple cards/accounts.

Additional Resources:
For more information on how to protect your personally identifiable information, check out our PII training course here. If you are required to follow PCI (Payment Card Information) compliance, check out our employee PCI training course here.

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