It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Riskmas

Give yourself peace-of-mind this year by following this list of DOs. These suggestions raise the cost for criminals who are working hard to try and trick you, your family, and friends into identity theft, fraud, and worse. Share this basic list with everyone you love to get the most magic (and peace of mind) from the season:

  • DO trust but verify. Don’t believe everyone is who they say they are, especially if it’s urgent or out-of-the-ordinary. Share this idea with your kids that it’s a-okay to check with a trusted grownup before acknowledging a request for personal info right off-the-bat. As my friend and colleague, Rachel Tobac, likes to say, “Be politely paranoid.”
  • DO use 2-Factor-Authentication on all your accounts, especially email and social media. Turn it on for your primary GMail account –> Turn it on for SnapChat –> for some examples.
  • DO triple-verify wallet addresses, recipients, etc. before sending any digital assets to anyone anywhere!
  • DO be sure to keep your devices’ software up-to-date (especially your new Smart TV – here’s a handy guide for that), any other “smart” devices you might own, and also the apps on your mobile devices to minimize your risks.
  • DO uninstall stuff you don’t use. Keep the apps and services on your devices to a minimum.
  • DO purchase goods and services only from sellers you know and trust. If it looks too good to be true, it is.
  • DO give yourself (and others) the gift of a password manager to help you stay safe all year long and save a TON of TIME, too (and if you’re reusing the same password anywhere, change them so each is unique)
  • DO purchase Yubikeys as stocking stuffers – hardware MFA is the best protection on the planet for email and social media accounts.
  • DO check credit card and autopay statements for small, errant charges that may not have been made by you.
  • DO slow down and be as present as you can be before clicking that link or responding to urgent requests. “The moment is as pure as you like.

Please share this list with those you love.

The awesome gif used in this post is by Brandon Do.