There is none denying the benefits of online shopping. The selection there is extensive, with many bargains, and if you choose the right vendor, returns are no problem. The best thing is the fact that it’s fast and secure. Well, there are some bad guys wanting to make a quick buck off you, but there are ways to avoid them. Here are some tips to make your online shopping as safe as possible, so that you can begin the process of checking items on your shopping list for holiday season.
Patronize known sites
Patronize a reliable site instead of searching sites on the net. The results of the search can be manipulated to take you off your track, particularly when you move away from the initial few pages. The chances of your being taken for a ride are low on using a known site. Some well-known sites that offer almost anything you may need are Amazon.com, Best Buy, Target and Home Depot etc. You must carefully watch the spellings of different sites (.net rather than .com etc.) You are likely to find offers on such sites very tempting and get tricked into giving your personal info.
Check for the padlock
Don’t ever use your credit card for buying any item online from any site that lacks SSL (secure sockets layer.) You can easily recognize the sites with SSL from their URL, which should start with HTTPS:// (and not HTTP://). You’ll notice a locked lock, touching the URL in its address bar or inside the status bar at the foot of web browser, depending on the browser you may be using.
Don’t disclose all
Online shopping stores don’t need to know your birthday or social security number. If some crooks come to know it, along with the number of your credit card, they can potentially cause you serious harm. The more information they get, the easier it becomes for them to pilfer your identity. As far as possible, try giving the minimum possible information.
Don’t wait till the end of the month to get your financial statements. Keep regular checks on your online statements pertaining to your debit card, credit card and even checking account. On sensing anything unusual, make it known to the concerned agency.
Don’t pay credit card bills unless you are sure that all transactions there are correctly reflected. Your bank or Credit Card Company gives you thirty days for notifying them of any errors. Beyond that time frame, the liability is yours.
Have strong passwords
It is vital to have unique passwords while shopping online and banking. It is safer to keep changing your password more often, especially if you frequently patronize the net for all your shopping.
Don’t use public computers
Though most people know that using a public terminal to make purchases is not a good idea, still many of them do it. If you find yourself among these people, at least remember to log out from your accounts before leaving, even if the only thing you did was check your email.
Another bad idea is to use your laptop for shopping while you are in a public place, like a coffee place. Anybody standing behind you might take a peak and see your credentials. If you must operate in such places, at least pick a place with your back against the wall.
According to recent studies, almost 6% of all adults will use their mobile to search and compare products before making an actual purchase. The safest way to shop through your mobile device is to use apps provided by known and trusted retailers.