The holiday season is near, which for most of us means time spent with family and friends.  Special traditions are celebrated and new memories are created. It is a wonderful time of year full of celebration.  Unfortunately, there are grinches out there who may try to ruin the festivities. The BLACKCLOAK Team would like to offer some tips to keep you and your family safe and secure this holiday season.


Many of us shop online.  It is important to remember when doing so to only provide credit card and other personal information on encrypted websites (i.e., the URL should start with “https” instead of “http”, and in many instances there is a padlock symbol in the address bar).  In addition, some online shopping sites like Amazon offer dual-factor authentication as an additional security option for your login. You should enable this on all online accounts that offer it.


There’s nothing better than getting those packages delivered after you’ve made your online purchases.   Sadly, a new breed of criminals, alliteratively known as “porch pirates,” are aware of these deliveries and shameless walk up to your front door and steal the delivered goods.  If possible, instruct delivery drivers to drop off packages at specific times when you know you are home and at more secure locations. Also, monitor your electronic notifications so you know when the packages are delivered and can quickly take them inside.  For those who shop at brick-and-mortar stores, parking lots can be a tempting target for criminals. Many of us have multiple stops as we shop, and sometimes we even make mid-shopping pit stops to drop off the gifts we’ve purchased. Be sure to hide your purchases from plain view and always lock your doors.


We use our phones much more frequently when traveling, which means the batteries often dip to low levels.  We see a USB charging station and think all is well. Be cautious, however, about plugging your phone directly to a USB port on the charging station, as it may result in data being transferred or malware being installed.  Use our BLACKCLOAK USB protection device (which blocks the data pins from connecting to the USB station) to ensure only power is being exchanged. Finally, protect your credit cards, debit cards, and passports using an RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) blocker sleeve.  These sleeves prevent the RFID tags embedded within them from being scanned by a criminal seeking to obtain personal information. 

We hope these suggestions have helped and as usual, if you have any questions, please contact us at [email protected].  We are here to help.