Online Shopping Safety

The convenience of online shopping in undeniable – looking at hundreds of stores from the comfort of your own home at any hour, comparing costs with a single click, and delivery to your doorstep. Just recently, Sears Holdings, and Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Off 5th, and Lord & Taylor experienced data breaches where thousands of customers credit card information was exposed. It’s important to make sure that you’re shopping online in a smart and safe way. 

Follow our tips below to be a smarter online shopper!

  1. Know your brand and use familiar websites – when visiting an online store, make sure you know the company. If you want to test out an unfamiliar company, do some research beforehand. Check out the reviews and pay attention to customer responses that didn’t receive what they ordered.
  2. Keep your information safe – beyond billing and payment information, your personal information should not be required. Never give out your social security number or any other personal information.
  3. Don’t click on popup advertisements – reputable stores rarely use popup ads as a means to advertise themselves. Quite often the popups will lead you to sites that download viruses onto your device.
  4. Be safe with your payment choice – opt to use credit cards and PayPal over debit cards. PayPal ensures that the company doesn’t see your bank details. Be wary of online stores that don’t accept credit cards: companies have to apply for approval to use credit cards as a payment method. If they don’t get that approval, that is not a good sign.
  5. See if the site is secured at checkout time, look at the web address at the top of the page. If it begins with https:// and you see a locked padlock, that means the site encrypts information and is secure. This means nobody can steal your credit card information from the site.
  6. Look at the return policy – If the company doesn’t have a return policy, that could be a sign of a less than legitimate company. At FixMeStick, we have a 45 day money back guarantee.
  7. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is – these offers are usually a scam so be cautious when proceeding. If you’re unsure, do some research.
  8. Avoid public computers  try to use your own computer and a private Wi-Fi network.
  9. Protect your computer from malware – ensure that you are running your antivirus software while online shopping and performing a FixMeStick scan after you checkout.

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