Cyber Monday Safety

RENO, NV - Last Cyber Monday was the heaviest on-line spending day in history.

This year, sales are expected to top that, with some sites offering deals for the following three days.

If you want to take advantage, don't let someone take advantage of you by leaving your account information vulnerable to hackers and others.

“More and more credit cards are stored on line,” says Sergeant Dennis Carry with Washoe County Sheriff's Cyber Crimes Unit.

While that may seem like the most convenient way to do business on-line with your favorite retailer, Carry says it's a good way for scammers to get into the system and take your and others' credit card information and use it.

If you have your card on file with someone on line, delete it.

Another potential problem: being notified by the company about your order or even a special discount by clicking on to a website address.

While it could be legitimate, Carry says think twice before clicking on.

“They need to go to the website themselves. They shouldn't click on an email they've received. Many people sign up for discount deals that they receive on their email. But when they click on that link, do they really know that they are going to the true website?” asks Sergeant Carry.

Other advice: Don't be dazzled only by impressive looking websites--look at the merchandise. Be wary of gift cards sold for drastically reduced prices, as well as one-day-only websites that offer sales on high-demand name-brand products.

Your credit card and its information are what scammers want.

Sergeant Carry says another way to protect it--write on the front or back "Check ID"

Clerks may be so busy during the holiday season they may forget to ask for your ID---a reminder on your credit or debit card will keep everyone honest.

Before making your final purchase on line, be sure to check off the company's return and warranty policies.

If you can't find it, contact the company to make sure you know what the guidelines are.