This holiday shopping season, it's your emails you should be checking twice.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday provide the perfect environment for cyber criminals, cybersecurity experts say: They offer up distracted shoppers and ample opportunity. An estimated 164 million people are planning to shop between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday, and online sales alone are expected to reach up to $143 billion, according to Deloitte's annual retail holiday sales forecast.
"As consumers rush from one store to the next, they'll be distracted and hurriedly accessing email from their phones, looking for that last-minute deal from their favorite store or brand," says Adrien Gendre, North American CEO of email security provider Vade Secure.
Because your guard may be down, you'll be more susceptible to phishing attacks and spam emails, Gendre says. Plus, he says, consumers are actually pre-wired to expect too-good-to-be-true deals this time of year.
Overall, fraud losses this year from online shopping, airline tickets, money transfer and banking services are expected to hit $22 billion, according to a new report from Juniper Research.