Holidays Mean Hackers. Are You Protected?

Holidays Mean Hackers. Are You Protected?

"Data breaches are going to happen," says Monica Horton.

Horton is the President of the Better Business Bureau of North Texas and has been a personal victim of hackers three separate times.

"There is no way you can completely prevent yourself from being a victim of identity theft, " Horton said. "Unfortunately, these days your information is out there."

As the holidays rush in, more and more people will be swiping those cards to buy gifts and food and all the essentials. So, how can you do your best to make sure if a store, you're shopping at gets hacked that you're protected?

"Consumers need to be very diligent in looking at their credit card statements and their bank accounts. Everybody has online access these days and we sometimes encourage you to check that information daily because time is of the essence," said Horton. "The quicker you identify it and flag it as a fraudulent purchase of something such as that then the easier it is to take care of it."

Some feel cash is the best option, but Horton said you should not be scared to use your card because it can actually protect you should something go wrong with the product you buy. She also said to use that debit card as credit.

"There are more protections in place when using credit cards as opposed to debit cards. Just be aware of that," Horton says. "Keep your personal information as safe as you can but, these data breaches are going to happen. We just have to know what to do and what steps to take. Consumers can always call us at the Better Business Bureau and we'll guide them in the right direction.

The best thing to remember here is, knowledge is power. The more educated and diligent you are with your credit card and bank accounts the more ready you will be should your information ever be compromised. Don't be scared, be informed.

One way to stay on top of your purchases during the holidays is to set up an alert system with your bank. They can text you every time a purchase is made on your card. That way you are instantly alerted should someone use your card number.