No crowds. No lines. No traffic or busy parking lots. Just you, your computer, and a bunch of cybercriminals. The convenience of shopping on the internet obviously comes with risks. But safe shoppers know how to identify threats and how to avoid them.
A safe shopper always verifies the legitimacy of a website.
Scammers create bogus sites intended to steal information or sell knockoff, inferior products. You can avoid this by double-checking the URL and making sure you have a secure connection (https).
A safe shopper knows when a deal is too good to be true.
An 80-inch TV shouldn’t be priced like an eight-inch tablet. If you find a deal selling something for a price that doesn’t make sense, chances are it’s a scam. Be especially suspicious if the phishy deal ends up in your inbox (versus finding it while shopping). In other words, think before you click!
A safe shopper goes incognito/private.
Ever notice how a product you searched for ends up in the advertisements you see on various websites or online? It’s called targeted advertising, which is made possible by storing and tracking your information. You can eliminate it by shopping with your browser in privacy or incognito/private mode, or use an alternative web browser that doesn’t store or track information. To open an incognito/private tab in your browser just click on the three dots or dashes in the top right corner and select select the incognito/private window option.
A safe shopper uses strong passwords and knows that less is more.
When setting up online accounts to make purchases, it’s vital that you use a strong, unique password, and never give out more information than needed. No online retailer needs your national ID number, for example. Only provide the minimum amount of data necessary to complete your transactions!