Life has become so easy because of online shopping. You no longer have to go physically to the store to buy what you want. All you have to do is just log in to your favorite shopping site, pick the goods, and check out. After that, you wait for a few minutes, and the goods are delivered to your doorstep.
However, the internet is not that safe due to fake sellers. There are instances where you make an online purchase, only to never receive it. So how can you protect yourself? By using the following tips:
How to be Safe while shopping Online
1. Don’t Shop in Unfamiliar Sites
If you want to avoid fraudsters, always shop at sites that you’ve worked with before. Unlike a physical store, it’s hard to find the actual location of an online seller. You cannot confirm if they have the goods that they are selling because you can’t actually see the live inventory. The only thing that guides you is the belief that seller will deliver on their promise. This is why it’s safe to shop with sites that you’ve purchased from before.
2. Do your Investigations
You can also do some digging before buying from a new online merchant. In this sense, social media is your friend. Find the sellers social media handle. If they have one, is the company active? You can also look at what other people have to say about the company’s goods and services. Other things that you should look out for on the website are:
- Physical office location
- Telephone number
- Email address
If the ecommerce site doesn’t contain any of the following information, you are most likely dealing with a fraudster.
3. If the Prices are too Good to be True
We tend to complain about how some sellers tend to be more pricy than others. But at the end of the day, the sellers want to make money. That’s why they price their goods a bit higher. That is why you should be careful if you find an online store that sells your favorite goods at ridiculously low prices. Unless the discount is from your wish promo code, that seller is scam artist. Just leave the site and never go back.
4. A Strong Password
Sometimes you can get a bill for goods that you hadn’t ordered. This can happen after someone steals your password, changes your shipping address, and begins to buy things using your credit card information. To prevent such an event from happening, you have to make sure that you create a strong password. Make sure that you include characters, symbols, and numbers because they are not easy to crack.
5. The Site’s Security
If a seller is actually serious about their customers, they will take the necessary precautions to protect them. That includes making sure that the personal data shared is private. If you see an ecommerce site that doesn’t have privacy protection, don’t give out any personal information on that site. The web address should start with ‘https’ to show that it’s secured.
6. Don’t Open Emails from Unknown Sources
Sometimes you can receive a spam email that says special offer. Unless you know the site, don’t open that email. This is because once you open the email; it will infect your computer with malware that allows the hacker to steal your personal information.
7. There is a Limit to How much Information you can Give Out
Normally, all that you need to make an online purchase is your credit or debit card number. Therefore, if you realize that the seller wants more information than is necessary, it should be a red flag. You can call them directly to ask why they need such information. If the explanation is not satisfactory, shop with a different site.
Use the above tips to stay safe as you shop online. Other things that you should avoid are public wi-fi and lending your laptop or internet-enabled device to a stranger. Your personal information could be easily stolen when you use a public wi-fi while a stranger could easily infect your device with a malware.