Traveling allows you to experience a lifestyle different than the everyday one. This could be your chance to see a show or concert, take a tour of scenic sights or stay in a great resort in a prime location. However, without taking proper precautions, you might be booking a scam. Some websites may be promising the trip of a lifetime but target vulnerable users to swipe money and important personal information. You’ll improve your chances of staying safe by watching for the following:
Avoiding community websites such as Craigslist when buying your tickets. Scammers often promise excellent seats at great prices but require an up-front payment which could leave you ticket-less and out a couple hundred bucks. When browsing various websites on a public server, unsolicited pages may try to get your attention. While legitimate travel businesses do use marketing tools like pop-ups, specials and limited time offers to encourage booking, be aware that enticing links and pop-up pages that offer better deals and bargains may not be as good as they sound. Also, don’t book or edit your trip through public Internet. Public Wi-Fi networks are often a gold mine for hackers and fraudsters. Connect with caution and try using a VPN instead of the airport, hotel or restaurant Wi-Fi.
For a legitimate site, you’ll receive a confirmation shortly after booking. If you receive a random email, perhaps a few days before the trip, asking to click a link to confirm the booking, call the hotel or airline directly. Knowing the dangers of cyber fraud can prevent a headache down the road. Taking control of your data and being mindful of Internet security can help you avoid online scams. Learn more about how travelers are affected with our accompanying resource.