Week Ending: 11th December - A Roundup in I.T. & Tech News

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2020 is nearing the end, which for many will come as a relief. With positive vaccine news flooding the headlines this week, we won’t be surprised if you’ve missed the latest developments in the world of Tech and I.T.

This week we explore how parents are spending £1000s on Tech gifts for their children this Christmas, how one in five online listings could be fraudulent, and shoppers being told to be vigilant when buying Christmas presents online.

Let’s bring you up to date.

Parents spending £1000 on children’s tech this Xmas

Christmas this year will be a time to relax, time to enjoy a well-earned break, however for some parents, Christmas will be very expensive!

According to research by musicMagpie, which polled 2,000 British parents, children across the UK have the latest tech at the top of their Christmas lists, and surprise, surprise it’s not cheap.

The research revealed this week that nearly half of children are hoping for a brand new Playstation 5 under their tree, retailing at almost £450. A third are also asking for a new smartphone, with 13% putting the new iPhone 12 on their wish list which retails at a staggering £799.

But, according to the research, more than a third of parents admit that they can’t afford to spend this money outright.

Liam Howley from musicMagpie commented:

“It can be so tough as a parent. We want our children to really enjoy their Christmas, but sometimes their wishes go beyond what we can afford. Our study has shown just how much pressure there is financially for families, and how it only gets worse as gadgets become more expensive. It makes it harder still if other children have certain tech, and your child just wants to fit in with their friends.”

Read more here.

One in five online listings could be fraudulent

Online shopping has become the norm this year. With the pandemic making it impossible to shop in store, we turn to Amazon and other online shopping providers to buy what we need.

But how do we know if the products for sale are legitimate?

According to research from Besedo, nearly 3,000 listings during November, including the Black Friday and Cyber Monday madness, showed that up to one in five items listed could be dangerous or fraudulent.

The research found that 15% of items reviewed showed signs of being fake, with that number rising to 19% on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, meaning many British shoppers could have potentially received fake goods or lost money on items that were never actually available.

One item which was cause for concern was Playstation 5. The console, which quickly sold out after launch, was highly susceptible to scams. Besedo’s research showed that 22% of Playstation 5 listings were likely to be scams rising to more than a third over the Black Friday weekend!

And it isn’t just tech items that are high-risk, pets (especially puppies) are also at risk of being a scam. Out of 604 listings for puppy purchases in November, a shocking 23% were scams!

Petter Nylander, CEO of Besedo commented

“This holiday season really is a one-two punch of risk for shoppers. Fewer gifts will be bought in physical retail stores, as we all work to limit the spread of the pandemic, leaving online retail as the main source for gift buying for many. At the same time, anticipated slow deliveries will give scammers more leeway to string along their targets, making it that much harder for victims to know that they’ve been caught out and take the appropriate action.”

Discover more here.

Christmas shoppers warned by NCSC to be vigilant as cybercrime soars

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has launched its new ‘Cyber Aware’ campaign ahead of an expected record rush on online shopping in the lead up to Christmas.

With many people doing their Christmas shopping online due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NCSC has warned shoppers to be extra savvy when purchasing items as victims last year lost an average of £775 each due to cybercrime.

Statistics from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau show that last year’s Christmas shopping period there were 17,405 reports of online shopping fraud with a loss of £13.5 million!

The NCSC’s new campaign will help remind people to use a strong and separate password for their email and always use two-factor authentication to log in.

Lindy Cameron, chief executive of the NCSC, said

“Technology will play an essential role over the festive period, with more people shopping online than ever before. Scammers stole millions from internet shoppers last Christmas – but by following our advice, you can protect yourself from the majority of their crimes. We hope the Cyber Aware campaign helps people to shop confidently online and enjoy their Christmas.”

Find out more here.

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