Black Friday and Cyber Monday: criminals may be lurking behind tempting offers!

24.11.2021 - On the last Friday of November, numerous retailers tempt customers with amazing offers – also online. But be careful; not all offers deliver what they promise. Cybercriminals may also be lurking behind some of these offers.

Black Friday is the most important shopping day of the year for many. Online retailers also use even better offers to grab people's attention. For example, an online retailer offering a 75% discount on those long sought-after headphones. However, these promotional days not only attract customers, they also appeal to cybercriminals. Attackers often exploit these special dates to lure their victims into a trap and make a profit. You should therefore be careful when shopping and when you receive the delivery notification. Attackers use various pretexts to reach their targets. After shopping days, attackers also like pretending to be a parcel delivery company, such as Swiss Post or DHL, in order to obtain your credit card details.

You can reduce this risk of fraud by following the tips below.

Things to consider before making a purchase:

  • Before any purchase, check out the online trader in detail.
  • Use customer feedback (reviews) to build a picture of the seller. You can find this feedback by searching the name of the webshop plus "reviews". Bear in mind that reviews can also be bogus.
  • Alarm bells should ring if an offer is obviously too cheap. If an offer sounds too good to be true, it often is.
  • Check whether the seller has an "About" section and whether this is complete and plausible. For example, does the seller give a plausible contact address, a correct telephone number or email address, and a commercial register number?
  • Check the information on cancellation rights, returning goods and postage costs.
  • Check the payment options. If possible, pay on account rather than at the time of purchase/ordering.
  • Be careful when providing your credit card number.

It is worth checking your credit card statements after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This way, unexpected transactions can be discovered early on and reported to the credit card service provider.


  • Choose a different password for each online service. This will limit the damage in the event of a data leak or password theft.
  • Only reveal details that are absolutely necessary. Online forms usually mark mandatory information with an asterisk: *.

Things to consider when waiting for your parcel:

  • Be wary of unsolicited emails.
  • Never enter personal data on a form that you have opened via a link in an email. If you are unsure, first clarify with the sender whether they actually sent the email to you. It is best to do this by telephone, but do not use the telephone number in the email; look for the number on the company's official website instead.
  • Never let yourself be pressured into clicking on a link, opening a document in an email or revealing personal data.
  • Block all email attachments that could contain macros, e.g. Word, Excel and PowerPoint attachments with macros.

Last modification 24.11.2021

Top of page