Going online for Cyber Monday deals can be a great way to avoid the hectic lines and the early hours of Black Friday. It’s also an excellent way to get some early holiday gifts right from the comfort of your own home. However, with this kind of convenience, it’s also convenient for hackers to get right into your system and cause some serious problems. It’s always better to be safe than sorry while using a hosted shopping cart or any shopping cart software online.
Here are some tips to keep your account safe while digging for the best deals online:
1. Make sure you always shop with a reputable online retailer: Places such as Amazon, Buy.com, Best Buy and Target are all trusted retailers known for having great deals. It’s better to shop through more official, mainstream retailers as a means to eliminate some of the problems early. Also be sure to take advantage of product review sites such as CNET for electronics reviews and Reviewster for product reviews.
2. Go to sites that have SSL security: You’ll have that extra security that makes it harder for people to phish your account when you make your purchases. It also keeps a level of confidentiality so that your information is safe. Don’t be afraid to take extra security measures because the holidays can be a great time for thieves!
3. Check your bank/credit statements thoroughly! When you get through with some shopping, it’s best to note right away how much you spent, and compare your balance with what was charged to your card. Some people might be a little savvy and actually make small purchases as a way to stay under the radar. For those that have a substantial amount of money in their account, this is a really good way for phishers to use your account to their advantage. If you do notice a charge you didn’t make, you’ll be able to check with your bank or creditor about the account, and find ways to report the thief as well as get your money back.
4. Another thing to do to help protect you from phishers is to update your computer to the latest settings: When hackers try to find out your password, they hope it’s the same one as the others. Updating your virus settings and upping your general security of your computer will help prevent from hackers trying to steal your information. This is good for not only protecting your credit card account, but your computer as well.
5. Regularly update your passwords. Even if you have a password that’s pretty complex with symbols, numbers, and both lowercase and uppercase letters, it’s always a good idea to change your password periodically. It would be really smart to change your passwords on your main accounts that you’ll use to purchase products. This will give you a better chance of avoiding hackers.
6. If it’s too good to be true, it’s very likely that is the case. Sometimes, you’ll get e-mails offering something like 95% off on a brand new HDTV with some weird looking link. That’s a spammer trying to hack into your account. Be very smart, and know what reputable sites are out there, so you know if the deal is legitimate!