Safeguarding Your Financial Information and Identity
Be a Cautious Cyber-Shopper this Holiday Season
It was just reported that the FBI seized 150 websites for selling counterfeit goods. The huge spike in cyber shopping during the holidays invites more scammers, so it’s very important to step up your vigilance and use extra caution when shopping online.
- Stick with familiar websites. There are enough good deals to be had with the retail websites you know. If you have to purchase from an unfamiliar site, make sure you access it by typing in the web address directly and that it includes https// at the beginning of the address.
- Avoid clicking on pop-up sites. Pop-up sites are more prevalent during the holidays, and while some may be legitimate, others may be scammer sites that will steal your personal information. Make sure your browser has its alert function activated. If you’re browser doesn’t have this function you should avoid clicking on any pop-up.
- If the deal looks too good to be true, then it probably is. Cyber thieves know that you are on the lookout for the best deals on the hottest products, so they will lure you in with a $39 Apple iPad offer that is nothing more than a link to a malicious website. A good anti-virus program will prevent your browser from going to these sites, but, for an extra measure of caution, just avoid any offer that doesn’t look right to you.