6 Tips for a Safe and Happy Valentine’s Day

Posted by Omega Security on February 10, 2014

Valentine’s Day is a celebration of our love for the people in our lives. Whether your idea of the perfect V Day is a bouquet of red roses dipped in chocolate or a romantic dinner with your significant other, here a few safety tips to help you enjoy this special holiday without turning a romantic gesture into a major annoyance.
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1)Shop Online Safely
Many busy people turn to the Internet when shopping for decadent chocolates or expressive flowers for their significant other. In fact, Valentine’s Day is right up there with Black Friday and Cyber Monday for retail sales. Unfortunately, scammers and identity thieves know this. To avoid these types of incidents online, shop on reputable websites only and only use secure websites for credit card transactions. Secure websites will have https:// before their Web address.

2)Inspect E-Cards Carefully

The most common form of identity theft involves inadvertently clicking on a malicious link, and the easiest way to target you with such links is to place them in an email. When Valentine’s Day rolls around, it’s not uncommon to receive e-cards from friends and relatives. But, before you click on that V-Day greeting, make sure the card was sent from a legitimate source. Also, never purchase anything from an email-based advertisement.

3)Use Caution with QR Codes

Tech-savvy criminals are always coming up with new ways to target us, and some of those email-style threats are being embedded in QR codes. QR codes are not nearly as easy to challenge as email links are, so the safest option is simply to avoid them. If you choose to use them, only use QR codes from sources that you trust implicitly.

4)Be Suspicious of Anyone Who Asks for Your Credit Card Information

Whether by telephone, email or some other means, criminals target people on and near Valentine’s Day by using subject matter that has a high probability of being relevant. For instance, one scam calls people and mentions a problem with their hotel reservations without ever mentioning the name of the hotel. The caller promises a free upgrade or some other perk but requires credit card information to dispense the goodies. If you receive such a call, hang up and call the place where you made the reservations directly to verify.

5)Avoid Online Dating Scams

Lonely hearts looking for a Valentine frequently become unfortunate victims of online dating scams, which are very prevalent during the month of February. Since legitimate online dating services experience a significant spike from actual clients during the season of romance, prey on the opportunity. Online dating scammers try to get to know their victims quickly and then request money for some concocted tragedy or as blackmail to keep personal information or photos from being made public. According to the FBI, the best way to avoid these scammers is to stick to dating websites with nationally known reputations.

6)Secure the Home Before Your Romantic Getaway

Many couples plan romantic getaways around Valentine’s Day. You can take certain measures to protect your home while you’re away, but the best way to protect your home on Valentine’s Day and throughout the year is by hiring a Miami security firm that specializes in home and fire safety systems. In addition, it’s always a good idea to have a neighbor bring in your mail and newspapers while you’re gone. He or she can also notify you of any suspicious activity.