Woman celebrating the festive season
Advice & Guidance

Online safety in the festive season

Whether you’re looking forward to giving and receiving gifts, hosting family and friends, or simply taking a break, Christmas and New Year’s can be exciting for everyone.

However, this time of year is a popular period for scammers. Here are some safety tips below to help keep you safe.


Fake links might be found in emails, texts, postings, and email attachments. It also applies to callers posing as delivery services, shops, banks, and software support firms. You can get an SMS from a company pretending to be a parcel delivery service notifying you that there is a “delivery cost.” Always call the organisation at the number you are sure is correct if you have any doubts. 

Phones, tablets & computers

Use a reliable security app or software on every new or used computer, tablet, or phone connected to the internet. As soon as you turn on the device, add a new PIN or passcode. Ensure all devices are automatically backed up so you don’t lose your priceless documents and images. 

Smart devices

Create a new password as soon as you turn on any internet-connected appliances, webcams, kids’ toys, voice assistants, or fitness trackers. Using the default factory-set passwords could make them vulnerable to hacking. For the same reason, always use unique passwords for various computers, websites, and accounts. Also, remember that those voice assistants are built to pick up everything! 

Pre-owned devices

When selling or giving a computer, mobile device, or console, perform a factory reset to erase your data. You can find out how from the manufacturer’s website. If you’ve bought or been given a used device, remove the previous owner’s settings and data if this hasn’t already been done.

Safeguarding your children

Talk to your kids about using the internet safely and responsibly, including what they share, who they communicate with, and the kinds of content they access, such as applications and games. Consider content filtering and downloading reputable parental control software.

Video calls

Many of us will use video calls to reconnect with loved ones. Use a provider that requires a strong password to ensure security and keep the call invitation and details private to the caller or group.