Safety comes first when you’re shopping over the season. Use these cyber security must-knows.
The holidays are just around the corner, and that means the gifting season is almost upon us. If you’re someone who hates to brave the sales in stores, you’re not alone. The retail sales from online orders alone have skyrocketed over the past decade, meaning that more are shopping online more than ever. If you’re one of those who takes the Internet by storm and gets all the gifts in one click, you’ll need to keep cyber security at the top of your to-do list.
When you’re providing personal information online, you want to ensure that it is protected. While there’s no secret formula for this yet, there’s definitely active steps that you can do to minimize the risk of getting scammed out of your hard-earned money and having your information compromised.
Here are six simple steps that you can do to stay safe shopping online!
- Trust your gut – You wouldn’t shop in a dodgy-looking retail store, so why do so online? If the website appears shady, has a weird address, and fills your screen with pop-ups, just forget about it.
- Never use public Wi-Fi – Most Wi-Fi hotspots don’t encrypt your data. Any neighborhood Starbucks hacker can pluck your identity out of the digital air if he has the right software.
- Check our credit card statement frequently – Using a credit card is really the only smart way to shop online. If you buy from a scam site using your debit card, check, or cash, there’s no way to get your money back. If you use a credit card, the card companies have to reimburse you for your fraudulent charges under the Fair Credit Billing Act.
- Change your passwords regularly – Even though it’s a pain, changing your passwords every three to six months help to keep your information and account safe.
- Look for HTTPS in the URL – If the URL is just HTTP, be careful with the information that you share. The ‘s’ means that the way that your information is being sent is secure.
- Update your browser – Each new version of your Internet browser, especially if you use one of the most popular browsers, gets a boost in security.
Don’t fall victim to daylight robbery online! Be sure to put these tips into practice to protect yourself and your information while cruising the web for your holiday gifts.