14 Tips for Safe Online Shopping. 14 Slideshow Arrow. There's every reason in the world to shop online. The bargains are there. The selection. Have you ever wondered why Amazon greets you by name or how the site seems to read your mind and predict which book you're interested in reading next ?. eBay is a great place to buy almost anything imaginable, but there are some things you might want to think twice about buying there for safety reasons. Sure, this.
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Any seller that wants a different kind of payment, like wired money, is a big red flag. There are protections even if you're not happy with a purchase you did make. If you see something wrong, pick up the phone to address the matter quickly. In the case of credit cards, pay the bill only when you know all your charges are accurate. You have 30 days to notify the bank or card issuer of problems, however; after that, you might be liable for the charges anyway.
Swindlers don't sit around waiting for you to give them data; sometimes they give you a little something extra to help things along. You need to protect against malware with regular updates to your antivirus program.
Better yet, pay for a full-blown security suite , which will have antivirus software, but also will fight spam, spear-phishing emails, and phishing attacks from websites the latter two try and still your personal info by mimicking a message or site that looks legit. We're happy to report that 53 percent of respondents in a PCMag survey this past summer say they're using antivirus software. Remember, it's not enough to just have it installed. Make sure your anti-malware tools are always up to date.
Otherwise, they can let in any new threats—and there are always new threats. Any of the providers in our roundup of the Fastest Free Nationwide Wi-Fi can generally be trusted, but you should probably also use a virtual private network to be safe.
It should be and percent on both of those here's why. What about using your own laptop to shop while you're out? It's one thing to hand over a credit card to get swiped at the checkout, but when you have to enter the credit card number and expiration date on a website while sitting in a public cafe, you're giving an over-the-shoulder snooper plenty of time to see the goods.
At the very least, think like a gangster: Sit in the back, facing the door. And use sites that you trust that already have your credit card stored, so you don't have to pull it out for more than a latte. We asked PCMag readers in a survey if they frequently changed their passwords. Eleven percent claimed they did it every day , but those people are either paranoid, liars, or paranoid liars.
The vast majority only change a password to protect privacy a few times a year 27 percent or more likely, never 35 percent. If you're going to be like the latter group, we will again beat this dead horse about making sure that you utilize uncrackable passwords.
It's never more important than when banking and shopping online. Our old tips for creating a unique password can come in handy during a time of year when shopping around probably means creating new accounts on all sorts of e-commerce sites. But even your perfect password isn't perfect. It'll also keep track of them and enter them, so you don't have to think about it. About 24 percent of people in a PCMag survey said they use a password manager, but the number should be higher.
If you're wary of a site, perform your due-diligence. The Better Business Bureau has an online directory and a scam tracker. Yelp and Google are full of retailer reviews. Put companies through the wringer before you plunk down your credit card number. That said—online reviews can also be gamed. If you see nothing but positive feedback and can't tell if the writers are legitimate customers, follow your instincts.
If nothing else, make absolutely sure you've got a concrete address and a working phone number for the seller. If things go bad, you have a place to take your complaint.
You may unsubscribe from the newsletters at any time. No online shopping e-tailer needs your Social Security number or your birthday to do business. However, if crooks get them and your credit card number, they can do a lot of damage. The more scammers know, the easier it is to steal your identity.
When possible, default to giving up as little personal data as possible. Even major sites get breached. Abine's Blur is a browser add-on that acts as a basic password manager and oh so much more. It's one of the most impressive online privacy solutions we've seen this year, and we've named it not only an Editors' Choice, but it'll be featured in our Best Tech Products of This article appears in: Online shopping is a great way to compare prices, find bargains and save money from anywhere with an internet or mobile data connection.
But as its popularity has increased, so have the risks, with more and more people trying to scam you out of your money or steal your card details. Thankfully, if you follow a few simple rules you can have a safe and secure online shopping experience. There are thousands of websites to go shopping on the internet, many with thousands more independent sellers.
The majority of these are perfectly legitimate, but spotting the fraudulent ones takes a bit of research. For independent sellers on a website, you can check out their online reviews on a site like TrustPilot. Better known ecommerce websites are certainly more reliable, but can be vulnerable to pharming attacks. You can find out more about these later on. How long will delivery take and where is the item being sent from?
A UK or Europe-based seller should be able to deliver within a week, if the item is in stock. What is the returns policy? Knowing what the policy is will help you if something is not delivered or arrives broken, even if the seller was not trying to scam you. There is also a large online market for selling counterfeit goods. But being aware of this and researching what the real thing would cost, will give you an idea of when an offer is too good to be true.
Only ever put your card details into secure websites. Be on the look-out for the following signs to know you are shopping safely. Remember, this only means the site is secure, not that the seller is honest. Padlock symbol — There should be a padlock in the address bar next to the website address.
Green address bar — On certain browsers and websites the address bar will turn green. Valid certificate — If you click the padlock symbol or just to the left of the address bar, you should see information on the site certificate.
This should tell you who has registered the site. If you get a warning about a certificate, avoid the website. You should also be aware of pharming scams, where fraudsters attack the website you are trying to use. Be on the lookout for strange looking web addresses with a selection of numbers or a different spelling. Make sure your software and anti-virus protection is up-to-date.
Updates often contain changes which help protect you are your devices from scammers and online criminals. Always choose strong passwords for your online accounts, using a combination of upper case, lower case, number and special characters.
Using a phrase or sentence is good practice. Make sure the internet connection you are using is secure. This is because public Wi-Fi is often unsecure, which means any information you send while connected to these networks can be accessed by fraudsters. Even your ordinary mobile data is more secure than public Wi-Fi. Even if you pay using a credit card through PayPal, or similar service, you will not get the additional protection. Protecting yourself when paying is very important.
You might lose a bit of money if you buy from a fake seller, but you can lose a lot, or even everything, if your details get stolen. This means the card provider has equal responsibility with the seller for faulty, unsatisfactory or undelivered items. This allows you to claim a refund from your card provider if a purchase does not arrive or is faulty.
The first step, if you have been sent the wrong or defective items, should be to contact the online seller and the website you used such as eBay or Amazon. If you think your card has been used fraudulently let your bank know straight away so they can stop any further use of it. If the issue is with a financial services company you can report it through the Financial Conduct Authority website using their reporting form opens in new window.
14 Tips for Safe Online Shopping
Yes. However, as with any other product there is a slight chance of things going south. Here are some pointers to ensure your money's safe: * Always order from. With that in mind and conscious that the Christmas season is about to get underway, we have put together five top tips on how to stay safe and. That's where you can sell and buy stuff in your neighborhood. Matt asked out team, “Is buying from Facebook Marketplace safe and secure?.