The Morning Blend


Webroot: Don't be a security scrooge this holiday season

Posted at 12:40 PM, Nov 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-27 14:40:05-05

The holiday season brings travel, giving back, shopping for our friends and family, and preparing for the New Year. But with all the holiday cheer, we may find ourselves becoming less cautious, especially when it comes to online safety. Between purchasing gifts online, making travel arrangements to see family, and wanting to give back to charitable organizations, how can you be sure your personal information is safe?

This year, there are six fewer days between Thanksgiving and Christmas which means the shopping sprees in between will be even more hectic. Luckily, computer security expert David Dufour is prepared to share how you can give and receive with ease this holiday season, while staying protected.

· DURING TRAVEL: Whether you’re visiting friends or family or taking a trip to escape the chaos, you should always use a VPN when connecting to unsecured Wi-Fi in hotels, airports and public cafes.
· SHOPPING FOR GIFTS: Each year the number of people purchasing their holiday gifts online increases. Even if you are in a crunch, be sure to check URLs before sharing info and avoid using debit cards.
· WHEN YOU GIVE BACK: Scammers know the holidays spark the desire to give back, making charity donations a hot target. Research reputable organizations before committing and never send a wire transfer.
· AS YOU PLAN FOR 2020: A new year calls for an online protection revamp. Brush up on best practices like strong passwords, leverage a strong antivirus program and be sure to update all devices with the latest operating system.

David Dufour is a cyber security expert, helping keep people safe from a variety of cyber threats including phishing, ransomware, and IoT-related malware. He is Vice President of Engineering and Cybersecurity at Webroot, a leader in next-generation endpoint security and cloud-based threat intelligence. Mr. Dufour has provided expert analysis and testimony in legal cases ranging from software product development and acquisition to embedded systems design and implementation. He possesses the ability to succinctly articulate complex ideas to a broader audience, which is crucial to providing context, depth, and understanding to all parties in legal cases. Mr. Dufour enjoys speaking at dozens of events across the globe to encourage cyber threat leaders to move the industry to a more automated, predictive state. Mr. Dufour is a veteran of the United States Air Force where he supported the World-Wide Military Command and Control System.