Are You Practicing Safe Online Shopping?
Online shopping offers convenience and variety that traditional shopping does not. You can purchase just about anything from the comfort of your own home – even groceries can be delivered. Although many of today’s internet users love the easy of online shopping, we can’t forget to stay cognizant throughout all our purchases. Online safety should always remain a top priority. Below are safe online shopping practices to keep you safe from fraud, so you can continue to browse peacefully.
Check Website Reputation
One of the most important things during online shopping is to utilize reputable, familiar websites. Sites like Amazon and eBay or major retailers like Kohls are more trusted than an unfamiliar site that appears in search results. An important thing to note is that reputable websites utilize secure sockets layer (SSL). You can recognize SSL websites by the https in the site address, as well as a padlock icon next to the site address or in the status bar of the browser window.
Don’t Respond to Illegitimate Emails
You should always be wary of emails from unfamiliar addresses asking you to purchase items or send them money. You should also be cautious of messages from known addresses that sound slightly off, as your family member or friend could be the victim of a phishing attack. Never click a link inside of an email that you are uneasy about. Emails or specials advertised on social media platforms that seem too good to be true usually are.
Beware of What You Share
When purchasing items online, you should never provide personal information like social security numbers or date of birth. A reputable website will not ask for such information. You are typically only asked to provide information like billing and shipping addresses, contact phone numbers, and email addresses during the checkout process. Utilizing a credit card is often the safest payment option in cases of fraud or issues with your purchase.
Keep Your Bank in Check
Another way you can protect yourself while online shopping is to regularly monitor your credit and debit card statements. Report any suspicious activity immediately to your financial institution or credit card provider. Many companies have the option to sign up for email or text alerts whenever your credit card number is used. This will help you report fraudulent activity as soon as it occurs.
Keep a Safe Connection
Along with the above steps, you should aim to make purchases on a secure Internet connection, such as a password-protected Wi-Fi network. Using free Wi-Fi offered in a public place can put you at risk for fraud. If you are shopping on your smart phone, utilize the apps provided by retailers and not the store websites. You should always install antivirus software on your computer and ensure software is up-to-date.
The most important things to remember when online shopping is to be smart with the sites you visit and safeguard your information. Doing so will help make your online shopping experience much safer.
Take steps to ensure you are fully protected during online shopping. See what services IND Corporation provides, such as mobile device management and antivirus programs. We’re committed to staying on top of your data’s longevity. Contact us today to learn more online safety tips.