Give the gift of security this Christmas with these top tips

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After another hugely difficult year for most of us, the festive season is typically a great opportunity to relax and enjoy time with friends and family.

Whether this may still be possible is still up for discussion, but one thing is for sure - cybercriminals rarely take a holiday, so unfortunately you'll still need to be on your guard this Christmas.

Never fear, however - we've got some top suggestions to keep you safe this holiday season.

Make sure any new devices are properly secured

To many people, Christmas mainly means one thing - presents. With Black Friday sales offering discounts on all kinds of devices, new gadgets and tech tools will be among the most popular choices being unwrapped, turned on, and connected to the Internet on December 25. 

But hackers often target such additions over the Christmas period to attack unwary new users, so keeping your new devices secured is paramount.

You can keep all your new devices protected by ensuring you always have the latest software updates and security patches installed - and it's best to do so as soon as new upgrades are released. 

This doesn't just apply to new laptops, tablets, or mobile phones either - devices such as fitness trackers, coffee makers, smart fridges and even routers can be targeted by hackers.

Fortunately, Bitdefender Total Security provides comprehensive protection against all major cyberthreats across mobile and PC devices, including Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS, with up to 15 devices per household covered by your subscription.  

Keep control

If you have been generous and splashed out on new internet-connected devices for your family this Christmas, it might also be worth making sure they stay safe online with some proper controls.

Online fraudsters often target children who may not have the right level of proper security knowledge, making them easy targets and a possible gateway into your home network or personal information, especially on supposedly family-friendly services such as gaming sites.

Bitdefender Total Security comes with a range of family safety features, including Advanced Parental Control, which lets you monitor and supervise your family's online activities. The fully customisable platform means you can filter out inappropriate pages, limit screen time, and block them from any harmful content, making sure everyone is protected.   

And watch out for scams!

If you didn't get what you wanted this Christmas, you might also be tempted to hit the sales in order to track down a bargain - but even this can carry some risks.

Phishing emails, where hackers spoof messages from a legitimate company in an attempt to steal login details or personal information, have seen a significant rise, and often try to lure in victims with fake offers or promotions linked to the holidays. 

If you receive an email that looks or seems suspicious, take a few moments to examine it carefully - phishing messages often contain obvious spelling, imaging or formatting errors, or have clearly malicious links.

Also be sure to keep your guard up when checking work-related emails, and make sure you don't fall victim to "holiday brain"and unwittingly open up a scam link or message.

Bitdefender Total Security goes beyond typical antivirus and malware blockers to keep you protected from all the latest phishing scams, including dedicated anti-phishing and anti-fraud systems to keep you safe online.