Wednesday, April 30, 2014

How To Stay Safe When Shopping Online

I read in the news the other day about a new security flaw that hackers found with Internet Explorer.  Microsoft is diligently trying to correct the problem, however in the meantime it is recommended that another browser be used like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.  The hackers are able to infiltrate Internet Explorer and set up a website that collects information that you are entering in like passwords and credit card information.

We would like to offer you some tips about staying safe while shopping online.  More than three quarters of Americans now actively shop online, spending close to $250 billion every year.  The sad fact that a growing amount of that is siphoned off by criminals through scams and other types of internet fraud.  

There is no doubt that online shopping is a great convenience and often you can save money too.  However, you can also lose out big time.  

Here are some of the most common tricks and how to avoid them:

Bogus Websites: Anyone can setup a website and make it look like and online storefront.  It may be a site you have never heard of offering fantastic bargain prices, or it may be set up to mimic a site you know well so you think you are in a safe place. Look at the online address of the site.  Crooks may change one letter in the name hoping you will mistype. Look for Better Business Bureau logo and check them out on the BBB website.

Online Auctions: The online auction business is dominated by Ebay but there are lots of other specialist sites and you should check them out carefully.  Ebay will never send you a message asking for sensitive information.  Hackers also send emails that look like they came from Ebay - but when you click on the link in the email you are directed to a site that is not legit.  Again, check the web address.  Ebay also has its own security guidance:  http://pages.ebay.com/securitycenter/

If you are a victim of Identity theft, there may be coverage to recover your identity on your home or renters policy.  You may need to hire and attorney or pay to get duplicate copies of forms, those expenses may be reimbursed through your home or renters insurance. Many companies add Identity Theft Recovery automatically or for a small fee. Contact us for more information or to see if you have that coverage.

Lastly, I invite you to download our FREE report on Ten Golden Online Shopping Rules - delivered to you free instantly.

 

 

 

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