The holidays are in full swing—and for many of us, that means shopping! The reliance on online holiday shopping continues to grow, making it a very lucrative time for cyber criminals to “shop” for your personal and financial information. Be particularly vigilant this time of year, being careful for phishing and SMiShing scams, fake shopping web sites and charity scams.
To help you be security smart over the coming weeks, here are some online shopping tips:
- Do your online shopping at home and make sure your wireless network is protected.
- Make sure your connection is secure.
- When making a purchase, always confirm the address bar of your browser starts with https:// (not http://). The s stands for secure and indicates the data being transmitted is encrypted.
- Beware that the small lock icon on your browser does not necessarily mean the site is secure. Cyber criminals are increasingly adding it to scam websites in their efforts to deceive people.
- Shop at websites you trust. Don’t click on links in emails, and never log in to a site via an email link. Instead, open a browser and hand type the Web address.
- Before placing an order with an unfamiliar website, search for online reviews using the words scam or fraud in an effort to determine its authenticity.
- Ensure your devices are updated with the current software version.
- Be aware of fake apps that may imitate apps made by legitimate retailers. You should only load apps from the official stores for Android (Play Store) and IOS (App Store).
- Use a credit card instead of a debit card, and review statements. Most credit cards have built-in fraud protection – just notify them quickly if you suspect something.
- Be cautious of phishing and SMiShing scams with fake shipping notifications and tracking alerts.
- Instead of clicking on the included link, go to the online retailer and follow the tracking link, or search the tracking number provided to determine if it is legitimate.
- And don’t forget to keep gifts a secret by clearing your browser history!
Taking precautionary steps like these will certainly help avoid any unfortunate situations this shopping season. We hope you have a happy and safe holiday!
Independence Day, or the Fourth of July is an opportunity to celebrate with family, friends and the community. Preferably, outside grilling, swimming, watching fireworks and other popular activities traditional to the holiday. But in order to have that fun-filled day, it’s important to stay safe. Accident-free holidays are the best holidays!
If you’re planning to make a splash at a private or public pool or the beach this holiday, review these tips from the American Red Cross on water safety. Primarily, they encourage swimmers to be water competent—know that the ocean, lakes and rivers are much different environments from pools. If you aren’t a strong swimmer, these tips may be helpful for preparing. They’re also a great resource for parents with children.
If you are hosting or partaking in a classic Fourth of July barbeque, it’s important to make sure the food you’re serving or bringing is well prepared and ready to eat. FoodSafety.gov provides helpful information to make sure any meats are cooked safely, and how to wash vegetables appropriately.
To end the day, fireworks displays are a must for many people. While fireworks are a fun and thrilling activity, they are dangerous if the proper precautions aren’t taken. USA.gov provides helpful safety information. Importantly, remember to make sure fireworks are legal in your community before buying or using them. Even if your state allows fireworks, that doesn’t mean that your county, town, or city permit their use.
We hope you have a safe and fun Fourth of July!
We’re halfway through spring—but that doesn’t mean you should only halfway prep your boat this season. Before getting back on the water, there are some important steps you should take to ensure you boat is seaworthy and safe. Having a set checklist can be useful to make certain you’re ready to head out on the water.
This month’s boating tip from National Marine Underwriters provides a checklist that captures information for annual boat preparation. Read the full article here and check out other tips and insights at nmu.com and imu.com.
OneBeacon Government Risks’ Joe Caufield is featured on the Public Risk Management Association’s (PRIMA) blog this week. His guest post, “Privatizing Government Services” discusses the emerging trend in the Public Sector.
View the full post on PRIMA’s Risk Management blog >>>
OneBeacon Technology Insurance, a member of OneBeacon Insurance Group (NYSE: OB), has entered into a partnership with BitSight Technologies, a leading provider of cyber security ratings. OneBeacon Technology Insurance will utilize BitSight Security Ratings to augment the underwriting process.
David Molitano, Senior Vice President, OneBeacon Technology Insurance, commented “We are very excited about our relationship with BitSight. The additional insight they bring to underwriting in this ever-changing environment will be a big plus for OneBeacon Technology Insurance. ”
According to Ira Scharf, General Manager of Worldwide Cyber Insurance for BitSight, “We are thrilled that OneBeacon is using BitSight Security Ratings to empower its underwriters to seamlessly identify and measure cyber security risk. We offer some of the most innovative solutions in the marketplace, and are pleased to be aligned with a group that is constantly looking to provide more robust underwriting and risk management services to their customers.”
OneBeacon Technology Insurance is a sponsor of the sold out PLUS Cyber Symposium, which is being held September 17th in Chicago. Lloyd Takata and David Molitano will be representing OneBeacon Technology Insurance and attending the event at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers. Presentations begin at 7:15 a.m. and the Symposium wraps up with a networking reception beginning at 5:30 p.m.
What would Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week” be without the obligatory message about boat insurance? The Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) details these types of policies and how they can protect you and your vessel. Typically, boat insurance covers bodily injury, property damage, guest passenger liability, medical payments and theft. The article also discusses boat safety, including traveling at safe speeds and in proper weather conditions.
If you’re in the market for marine insurance coverage, visit National Marine Underwriters’ website at http://www.nmu.com/. With a sole focus on marine insurance, NMU is a leading underwriter of recreational boats, yachts and six passenger charter boats.
August is here and many of us want to enjoy this last full month of summer outside. But while you may be eager to soak up the sun, PropertyCasualty360 reminds us that August is also heat stroke season. During the hottest months of the year, our bodies become more prone to heat exhaustion. According to the National Weather Service, heat is a leading-weather related killer.
To minimize the risk of heat stroke, review these 4 tips by PropertyCasualty360. Remember to stay cool and hydrate while you enjoy the dog days of summer!
OneBeacon Government Risks (OBGR) recently launched a multi-purpose blog to cover its company news and events, as well as provide safety and risk management tips. OBGR provides custom insurance solutions for midsized municipalities, counties and special districts.
To find out more, visit OBGR’s In the Know blog!
This Sunday, many of us will host or attend a Super Bowl party to watch the Seattle Seahawks’ top-rated defense match up against the Denver Broncos’ explosive offense. And given the occasion, the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) reminds us to have a defensive game-plan in check for responsible entertaining—and driving. In an online statement it released on Wednesday, the I.I.I. says that under some state social liability laws, a host could be responsible if their guest drinks and drives.
According to the I.I.I., drivers should be especially attentive while traveling home from the game (which kicks off at 6:30 p.m. ET), due to a heightened risk of alcohol-impaired or fatigued motorists. As Sunday’s competitive match approaches, we hope you’re prepared to enjoy it safely and responsibly!