enroll in minutes. Holiday online shopping safety tips; Holiday online shopping safety tips. Keep in mind, Wi-Fi networks use public airwaves. Stay ahead of online scammers and identity thieves by using these tips to help secure your personal information while shopping online. Microsoft and the Window logo are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the U.S. and other countries. Protect yourself against malicious mobile apps by only downloading apps from reputable stores, such as Galaxy Apps, the App Store, Amazon App Store and Google Play. “Online Safety.” Accessed Dec. 9, 2020. Call 1.800.651.4126 Attention, holiday shoppers: You’ll usually get the best liability protection — online and offline — when you use a credit card. 1. If someone racks up unauthorized charges on your credit card, federal regulations say you won’t have to pay while the card company investigates. However, a growing percentage of holiday sales will happen online this year as many people look for a safer way to shop due to COVID-19. Stay ahead of online scammers and identity thieves by using these tips to help secure your personal information while shopping online. Ship to a secure location Always use a credit card instead of a debit card when making purchases online, if you can. Ship to a Secure Location. Please review complete Terms during enrollment or setup. The number one way to protect your device and data is to install mobile anti-virus software and make sure it is up to date. In fact, it just might be the perfect gift for everyone on your shopping list! Make sure you check return policies. Take care that your personal information is secure when shopping online by only shopping on secure websites. That’s why it’s best to either skip the autofill option or try using a password manager, which provides an extra layer of protection to your account info. Firefox is a trademark of Mozilla Foundation. Did you know that consumers are vulnerable to having their identity stolen? Most major credit cards offer $0 liability for fraudulent purchases. Look for it and read it before completing a sale. Holiday Shopping Safety Tips Every Family Should Know About The shopping season is in full swing, but buyer beware – there are crooks everywhere! What Is Personally Identifiable Information (PII)? 1) Try Not to Carry a Lot of Cash Stealing someone’s debit or credit card takes extra work. The item could be a knockoff. While most transactions will be uneventful, security on those purchases is not a given. Mobile apps allow you shop for and purchase items while you’re on the go — making holiday shopping a breeze. While the thought of getting ripped off — during the holiday season, no less — is enough to make anyone say “Bah, humbug!” there are ways you can protect yourself while holiday shopping online. To ensure a smooth online shopping experience, take heed to these following five safety tips: Look for the lock: Always use a secure Internet connection when making a … Look for reviews that don't sound overly angry and or like an isolated customer-service misunderstanding. Remember that no one can prevent all identity theft or cybercrime, and that LifeLock does not monitor all transactions at all businesses. The rise of online shopping has led to an increase of home deliveries — and with it, an increase in “porch pirates”, or thieves who steal packages from doorsteps. Here are the most important recommendations to follow for your holiday shopping: Wear a mask. Rock-bottom prices could be a red flag that the business doesn’t have those items in stock. Or just walk away and find a better-known, accommodating website for your holiday buys. Up to $149 billion: online holiday shopping sales for 2019 (projected), from November to January. With a greater percentage of sales taking place online, cybersecurity is an essential consideration. Start your protection, Start your protection now. If you don't see these, it is best to try a different merchant.. Holiday online shopping safety tips. It’s better to play it safe. How to Help Protect Yourself Against Identity Theft — Because Prevention Is Impossible, Get discounts, info, protection tips, and more, We use the information you provide in accordance with our. Shopping Online. How does the merchant safeguard your credit card and other personal information? These are different from debit and credit cards because the money isn’t connected to your credit history or to a bank account. Here’s why. 2. When you receive a text or email about a charge, you can check the message and likely easily recall whether you recognize the charge and made the purchase. Due to the pandemic, this holiday season may look and feel a bit different, but we all still need to be aware of the potential dangers online shopping can bring and the ways we can protect ourselves. Dress casually and comfortably. The crook can’t open new credit accounts in your name, drain your checking account, or make purchases over the amount you’ve already loaded. Our goal is to increase awareness about cyber safety. No shopping website will ever need your Social Security number. Do not carry a purse or wallet, if possible. Clicking on emails from unknown senders and unrecognizable sellers could infect your computer with viruses and malware. Unfortunately, it’s also the season for online scammers to make a killing — typically, at your expense. So if a store employee or a hacker tries to get their hands on the store’s payment information, they wouldn’t be able to see your credit card or bank details. Check your statements for fraudulent charges at least once a week or set up account alerts. Installing antivirus software and keeping your browser updated can … We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. Make sure to ship your packages to a secure location and try to be home when they are delivered to keep these “porch pirates” from stealing your gifts. Or at least spend the time to confirm it’s a legitimate entity, by checking customer reviews and other consumer feedback. Visit ADT.com. $1007: average amount that American consumers plan to spend on holiday shopping in 2019. Make sure you know how the vendor handles returns, if at all. The Android robot is reproduced or modified from work created and shared by Google and used according to terms described in the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution License. But to shop online safely, and protect your personal identity from malicious types, take heed of these online shopping safety tips. Using a prepaid debit card removes a lot of the risk that goes with online shopping. Doing so can help ensure that your holiday season can be merry, bright, and safe from cybercrooks. Online shopping can be so much fun: You find a shiny object you love, click the “buy” button, and get a package delivered to your door. Think of it as a secure tunnel your Internet traffic travels through while you browse the web, making the data you send and receive safer from interception by nearby hackers. A macro virus infects a software program and causes a series of actions to begin automatically when the program is opened. Credit card fraud is a serious problem in the U.S., but using a digital wallet or app, such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, Venmo, or others can increase your transaction security. A VPN creates an encrypted connection between your smartphones and computers and the VPN server. There is no privacy protection attached to these pages, so we suggest you exercise caution before providing your credit card information over these sites. Billions of dollars are spent shopping online ever year. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency. Know a company's return policy before purchasing because goods sometimes need to be returned. Sometimes, something in your email in-box can stir your holiday consumer cravings. Mac, iPhone, iPad, Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. You might be tempted to take your shopping spree to a coffee shop for a cup of joe. 6. Being aware of your surroundings is indeed a great advantage to keep you far from harm’s way. In this Monday, Dec. 12, 2016, photo, a person searches the internet for sales, in Miami. On Monday, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody issued a Consumer Alert with online shopping safety tips for Cyber Monday and the remainder of the holiday shopping season. If no one’s home to accept a package, consider shipping to your office or another safe place. A data breach at one company could give criminals access to your other, shared-password accounts. And a recent Experian survey found that 43% of victims said their identity theft occurred while holiday shopping online. While it may be convenient to store personal and payment information in your online accounts, it does come with risk. You can also try a virtual credit card. Tuesday, November 24th 2020. But these transactions don’t always go so smoothly. The vendor's privacy policy should detail this. Keep in mind, your liability for unauthorized charges on your debit card is capped at $50, if you report it within two business days. The holiday countdown is on, and more than half of holiday shoppers plan to make purchases online during the 2019 season of giving. And if you become a victim of identity theft, dedicated Identity Restoration Agents will work to fix it. Some banks offer this nifty tool that acts like an online version of your card. If you don’t see that lock or the “s” after “http,” then the webpage isn’t secure. Since you're buying the item sight unseen, and it has to be transported, there's always a chance things don't work out. With a greater percentage of sales taking place online, cybersecurity is an essential consideration. Did you know? Compare the product with other shopping sites to see if the price is significantly lower. Plus, you still have some degree of fraud protection. ... More:Fake apps, fraud take joy out of holiday shopping. 3. Here are more tips to guarantee your safety during the holiday season. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. Shopping heats up in November and December, and a lot of those transactions occur on laptops, tablets, and mobile devices. But the danger arises if you unknowingly install an app laced with malicious software, or malware. For instance, it might be tempting to open an email from an unfamiliar business that promises a “special offer.” But that offer could be special in a bad way. The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Investopedia receives compensation. So how do you fill your online carts with all of the seasonal decorations, gifts, and scented pinecones without compromising your cybersecurity? However, since many prepaid debit cards come with high fees, read the terms before getting one, and consider only using these for holiday shopping. As you shop, please be mindful of the following safety tips to help keep your holiday shopping safe and joyous! Investigate the authenticity of the brand. But if a website offers a deal that seems too good to be true, then it probably is. Anyone who tries to use that number will be out of luck. The LifeLock Brand is part of NortonLifeLock Inc. LifeLock identity theft protection is not available in all countries. The holidays are just around the corner, and that means many of us will be making purchases online to avoid large crowds and busy mall traffic looking for a safer way to shop due to COVID-19. Internet safety begins at home, so make sure you protect yourself. Help keep your account safe by securing it with a strong password — “Santa123” won’t do. Safe online shopping tips for the holiday season Safe online shopping tips for the holiday season. Our goal is to increase awareness about cyber safety. According to the Better Business Bureau, online purchase scams expose your identity and financial information, which is … Avoid wearing expensive jewelry. A budget is an estimation of revenue and expenses over a specified future period of time and is usually compiled and re-evaluated on a periodic basis. It only takes minutes to enroll. USA.gov. Don’t prioritize deals over your data and stay alert to … If you don't have an antivirus program installed on your computer, that is the place to start before you shop and give out sensitive personal information such as your credit card number. If you have previously registered the card and you report the loss or theft to the card issuer, most will restore your original balance and issue a new card. Criminals use these apps to infiltrate smartphones and do any number of things, like direct users to fraudulent premium subscription services or automatically subscribing users to expensive content providers without the user’s consent. Installing antivirus software and keeping your browser updated can help mitigate some online security risks. ... or threat we write about. . Are products as advertised?. Android, Google Chrome, Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google, LLC. With a virtual credit card, the issuer will randomly generate a number that’s linked to your account, and you can use it anywhere online and choose when the number expires. Expect a record for online holiday spending this year. Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other big sales along the way have become a tradition of holiday shopping. The holiday season is a prime time for hackers, scammers, and online thieves. Try to shop during the day, but if you do shop at night, do not do it alone. Look for seals of approval by agencies such as the Better Business Bureau to confirm a vendor's reputation. Here are some tips on how: That small lock icon in the corner of your URL bar tells you that the web page you’re on has privacy protection installed. You've investigated the vendor and found your item of choice at a great price. A zero liability policy absolves a credit or debit cardholder from responsibility for fraudulent charges, but be sure to read the fine print. Norton. Identity Theft Protection: What's the Difference? The holiday countdown is on and more of us are shopping online, especially during COVID-19. Black Friday online shopping sales hit $7.4 billion in 2019 which is an all-time high. But shopping IRL — in real life — offers one advantage: You can usually be sure the business and the inventory exist. Visit CISA.gov for more information on shopping safely this holiday season . Compare prices and pictures of the merchandise at similar websites. With a little tech know-how and the freely available Wi-Fi password at your favorite cafe, someone can intercept the data you send and receive while on free public Wi-Fi. Any reputable vendor will email you a sales confirmation after your purchase. Don’t use the same password — however strong — on multiple accounts. Here are seven tips for shopping online safely this holiday season. Robust holiday shopping can add pages to your credit card statements. This way, you'll have the latest security patches, which will close some of the loopholes that hackers and phishers look to exploit., What happens to your information once you enter it? Safe holiday online shopping tips Nov 27, 2017 One of the biggest obstacles to online shopping is the fear of fraud or a security scam and that can be an issue regardless of whether you’re shopping from a web browser or a mobile app. Keep your cyber information secure while enjoying safe holiday shopping online. Cybersecurity refers to the measures taken to keep electronic information, as well as hardware and software, private and safe from damage or theft. You just load money onto the prepaid debit card, use that balance for purchases and reload when needed. Credit Monitoring vs. Stay Cyber Safe and Keep Your Holidays Jolly As you can see from the holiday shopping safety tips we've shared, good decision-making is key to keeping your personal and financial information secure when shopping online. Norton LifeLock offerings may not cover or protect against every type of crime, fraud, or threat we write about. Time to buy, right? Double-check your online store, especially if it’s your first time there, for reliability. Do not leave your purse in your shopping cart or on a counter – not even for a moment. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners. Cyber and Privacy Insurance provide coverage from losses resulting from a data breach or loss of electronically-stored confidential information. “Securing Your Web Browser.” Accessed Dec. 9, 2020. 14 Tips for Safe Online Shopping. The website may exist only to get your personal information. Don't delete these emails until the item has arrived and you know that you are absolutely satisfied. Please review complete Terms during enrollment or setup. NortonLifeLock, the NortonLifeLock Logo, the Checkmark Logo, Norton, LifeLock, and the LockMan Logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of NortonLifeLock Inc. or its affiliates in the United States and other countries. 8% of consumers surveyed in 2018 said they were a victims of identity theft during the holiday season. Take precautions to make sure your personal information is secure when shopping online. 18%: The amount online sales are projected to grow in 2019 compared with 2018. It’s important to take steps to protect yourself when shopping online. In 2019 Black Friday saw 93.2 million buyers shopping online. The holidays should be a time of joy as you spend time with friends and family — not stress and frustration as you untangle a case of identity theft or financial fraud. Online purchase scams, which can expose your identity and even drain your wallet, are the riskiest form of consumer fraud, according to a report published by the Better Business Bureau. Ensure you’re getting a new — not used — item, which might account for the lower price. But if someone uses your account and you don’t report the theft, after 60 days you may not be reimbursed at all. To play it safe, consider doing online business only with retailers you trust and have shopped with before. Some providers, such as Google Play, scan apps for malware prior to publishing them on their store. Learn how to protect yourself by reviewing our top 5 shopping tips. On the web, some businesses are fabricated by people who just want your credit card information and other personal details. Sarah Michelle Gellar uses this method to … This is convenient, but it's something you might want to avoid for security reasons—and to help prevent those impulse buys., One of the best things about the internet is the wealth of the information available. 84% of holiday shoppers plan to use their smartphones to research products and look for coupons before buying in-store. From the convenience of making purchases at your fingertips and next-day delivery to getting great deals and an the endless catalogue of purchasable items, online shopping has only grown in popularity. So if a scammer gets hold of the card information, the crime pretty much ends there. Amid the increase in e-commerce, financial fraud climbs, too. It might be best to generate a new number every time you buy something online, or when you shop with a new retailer. If a hacker accesses your favorite shopping account, it could then be easy for them to make fraudulent purchases with the credit card information you’ve saved in that account. As online shopping has increased during the pandemic, so have concerns of package theft from porches or mailboxes. Still can’t resist the lure of shopping online while sipping that peppermint latte? The digital wallet obscures your payment card information so the merchant sees a unique, one-time code that’s only good for that purchase. Here's one way you can tell: There should be a letter "s" after the "http" in the web address and you should also see a closed padlock icon to the left of the browser address. If you must shop online on public Wi-Fi, consider installing and using a VPN — short for virtual private network — on all mobile devices and computers before connecting to any Wi-Fi network. If someone has the password to your account, they could log in, change the shipping address, and order things with stored payment data while you get stuck with the bill. If information is hard to find, consider taking your business elsewhere for safety's sake. Investopedia requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. A A. There are a variety of antivirus software packages available, so check reviews. In 2019, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center got an average of 1,300 online theft complaints a day with a total of $3.5 billion in losses to individuals and businesses. Look for Security on the Retailer's Website. An icon of a locked padlock will appear, typically to the left of the URL in the address bar or the status bar down below. VIDEO 1:07 01:07. Would you know if your Social Security number was being used? Unfortunately, it's also the season for online scams. Consider bringing a security travel pouch instead. Editorial note: Our articles provide educational information for you. LifeLock identity theft protection sees more threats to your identity, like your personal info on the dark web. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Alexa and all related logos are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. How to protect yourself while holiday shopping online and afterward. Before you start online holiday shopping, take a minute to shore up your cybersecurity with our tips below and check out our password manager and identity theft protection service recommendations. An eavesdropping attack is the theft of information from a smartphone or other device while the user is sending or receiving data over a network. 2. Be sure to update your browser to the latest version. Some vendors offer to create an account for you and save your credit card information for easy ordering. by Melissa Scavelli. A dozen or so reviews should give you a good idea of what to expect. Some retail websites may not be equipped to secure your info, which could leave your personal details and payment card data vulnerable to cyberthieves or data breaches. Bottom line: It’s never a good idea to shop online or log in to any website while you’re connected to public Wi-Fi. Use a complex set of at least 10 lowercase and uppercase numbers, letters, and symbols. The URL will start with “https.” These websites mask any data you share, typically on pages that ask for passwords or financial information. Other safety tips when shopping this holiday season. Holiday Online Shopping Tip – Use Safe Methods for Purchases Before you make an online purchase this holiday season, make sure you're using safe methods for your purchases. Does the company deliver on time? Shopping online usually means giving out information that an identity thief would love to grab, including your name, address, and credit card information. Check to make sure the vendor uses a secure site to process the sale. Copyright © 2021 NortonLifeLock Inc. All rights reserved. Don’t use personal information that others can find or guess, such as birthdates, your kids’ names, or your favorite color. To know if the site has SSL, look for the “S” in HTTPS, instead of HTTP. Maintain social distancing of at least six feet from … While the vendor should have any sales data on their end, the receipt has information that you want to be armed with should you need to call customer service or return a purchase.. 43% of online shoppers surveyed said their identity theft occurred holiday shopping online. If you’re asked for very personal details, call the customer service line and ask whether you can supply some other identifying information. Thankfully, the era of online shopping makes getting the … 56% of holiday shoppers plan to make purchases online in 2019. Posted on December 1, 2020. Cyber Monday is one of the busiest online shopping days of the year, with many Floridians … In producing accurate, unbiased content in our account for you shopping makes getting the … shopping by., dedicated identity Restoration Agents will work to fix it be convenient to personal! Account alerts cup of joe red flag that the business doesn ’ t connected to your office or another place. Resist the lure of shopping online by only shopping on secure websites receives compensation your,... And safely store those strong, complex passwords while most transactions will be out of holiday shopping online only. Found that 43 % of victims said their identity theft protection sees more threats to your identity, your. Or threat we write about will work to fix it compared with 2018 confidential.! Big sales along the way have become a victim of identity theft or,. An account for you and save your credit card instead of HTTP … safe online tips. You buy something online, if possible follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our card when purchases. Of antivirus software and keeping your browser updated can help mitigate some online security risks the logo. 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