Let’s face it; there are so many benefits of shopping online: easy access to various shops and products, compare prices and spot bargains, fast delivery, shop from the comfort of your home, etc. So it’s not surprise that millions of people use the internet every day to buy online. But it is still very important to use a bit of common sense and follow simple rules to ensure that you do not run into any problems.
Here are 12 tips for staying safe when shopping online:
- Look for physical addresses and telephone contacts, particularly for the smaller retailers.
- When entering credit card details, look for a padlock symbol on the bottom of browser or web address bar as it will mean that the retailer is using SSL, making it harder for your information to be cracked
- The website address should have the letter ‘s’ at the beginning – https:// instead of http:// when you are typing your credit card details
- Check the merchants’ certificate and padlock via the browser to get more information about sellers particularly from the smaller and less well-known sellers.
- Read other shopper’s opinions if you are unsure about the reputation of the merchants
- If you get a warning about a certificate, be cautious as the padlock doesn’t say anything about the business’ ethics. Look for more information about the company via the internet.
- If it’s too good to be true, it normally is. So make sure you check for more information across the internet to see if anybody had experienced any problems
- Keep your browser updated as it will feature up-to-date certificates and updated security features to protect you from scams
- Wherever possible, use credit cards instead of debit cards as you will be protected by the banks if you have suffered from any frauds.
- Check your bank statements regularly and keep an eye on any unusual transactions. If you have spotted anything out of ordinary, report it to the bank immediately.
- Make sure that the internet connection and Wi-Fi are you are using is private and not shared with anyone. At the same time, avoid using public Wi-Fi unless they are from known networks like Starbucks.
- It sounds very easy but use strong and unique passwords for each accounts that you open online.