Safety Tips When Shopping Online
Today we tend not to think twice about browsing when shopping for goods, and “window shopping” online. The proportion of online to High street purchasing for certain sectors is approaching 50% of the market.
What could be easy to forget, are a few basic security precautions, that take little more than just a glance, or simply to follow some common sense.
Online shopping is going to mean giving some of your financial details to a seller through your computer. This should be safe, but exercising a little caution can help to keep credit card fraud at bay.
Many established names from the High street have opened online outlets, along with established online names such as Amazon.
These well known names will probably be using the most up to date online security measures, but there will be occasions when you will come to a web site for the first time.
Make sure that the retailer you’re looking at has contact details other than just an email address, gives delivery details, and returns policy.
You might look for consumer review web sites, where goods and businesses are discussed and rated.
A glance at the browser bar as you go to the payments page, should show the http at the start of the address, change to https. The s indicates that the information that you enter, will be encrypted.
The retailer’s computer can decrypt it, but no one else can. Another symbol that the page is secure is a closed padlock symbol in the browser bar.
Never give your card details to anyone via email. Email scams that have been designed to relieve you of your card details, are known as phishing. Although these may appear to come from genuine outlets, remember, banks and any legitimate retailers will not send emails with a link requesting your card details.
Always use a credit card when making purchases. Should a scam occur, or the retailer prove problematic, under the consumer credit act, credit card companies have a duty to provide a measure of protection, provided you have shown reasonable diligence.
Check your credit card bill promptly, and make the provider aware of any discrepancy as soon as possible.
These days, being online when out and about is easy, with smartphones and tablets, and areas of public Wi Fi. These are fine for social media, and most pastimes, but using “free Wi Fi” in your local coffee shop to make purchases is to take an unnecessary risk.
Many of these hot spots are not secure and leave your information open to interception.
Always good to remember the old adage, if a deal looks too good to be true, it probably is, and steer clear.