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Tips for Safely Shopping Online

laptopIn 2014, CPC Strategy Blog predicts 195 million Americans will shop online. Shopping online provides quick access to your favorite stores and allows you to shop at your convenience. Even though the holidays are quickly approaching, you can still take advantage of Free Shipping Day on December 18. Over 900 participating retailers are offering free shipping and delivery of items by December 24.

As you shop online this holiday season and in the future, consider these tips to help you shop safely:

Make sure the site is secure

Before you make purchases online, look for signs that the site is secure before you enter your payment information. Examples include a closed padlock near the browser’s address bar or the website address begins with “https.”

Beware of SPAM emails

Be on the lookout for emails from senders requesting personal information like login credentials or credit card information. If you receive a link to a website through an email, hover over the link to verify it actually takes you to a legitimate website before clicking on it. For additional information about email safety, click here.

Check the website’s privacy settings

Review the website’s privacy policy before making purchases online. This will tell you how the merchant plans to share your information, what information is gathered by the website and their data security practices.

Be cautious about the information you share

You should not have to give a retailer certain personal information to complete a transaction online. For example, you should not give your social security number or your bank account number in the checkout process.

For more information on protecting yourself online, visit our Security and Privacy section here.