How many times have you been duped by third-party websites while shopping online? It’s tough for shopaholics, like me, to make their way through the apparently simple task of online shopping. Imagine that you’re faced with an irresistible offer while browsing through the internet. All you need to do is click the link and buy the product.
However, once you enter the portal, your credit card information gets stolen and misused. Sad stuff, isn’t it? So how best to avoid such online shopping scams? Here are 10 cybersecurity rules that you should follow before purchasing any product online.
Learn to sort out the genuine shopping portal from the fake. Every authentic website either has a Transport Layer Security (TLS) or a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). These security protocols allow the customer to safely transfer funds over any website.
You can determine whether or not a shopping portal has implemented those protocols by glancing at the address bar on the payment page. If it comprises of “https://www…….com”, then it’s perfectly safe to make the payment. The ‘s’ after ‘http’ makes all the difference in the world!
Next, be sure to check out the website About Us page. Many businesses may falsely claim their launch dates, but at least you have an inkling of what the company is all about. Genuine shopping portals would focus on perfecting they are About Us page after all!
Don’t forget to check out consumer reviews about a particular portal before making a payment, on sites like BBB and personal blogs.
For example, David Anderson, an author at IHateWritingEssays.com writing services reviews, claims that a TLS level security is hardly enough for guaranteeing the safety of your transaction. What if the seller fails to deliver the product you ordered?
Additionally, are a website’s offers too good to resist? If they are offering iPhone X for $100, then there sure is something fishy about it. Go through their terms and conditions carefully before making the payment, no matter how believable they may be at first glance.
Furthermore, never use a public WiFi for conducting transactions. There may be hackers in the vicinity who can easily gain access to your credit card information by running a few easy scripts. You may cross the limit on your card in no time if that happens!
What if the website is completely secure, filled with amazing reviews every step of the way? A flawlessly genuine shopping portal still stands a risk of getting hacked, especially if the password you entered is as obvious as looking up your LinkedIn bio.
Include unconventional characters in the password, along with capitalized letters strewn unevenly. But take great care to memorize it. Never, ever write it down on a piece of paper or type it in your phone’s notepad.
However, creating an indecipherable password is hardly ever the issue. Giving out more information than required is! Why would any shopping website need your Social Security? If you’re prompted to enter the same, stay as far away from that portal as possible. There’s really no need to disclose all the information on your SSN just to buy a pair of socks!
Finally, don’t hesitate to take action if, for any reason, you don’t receive the product ordered. Flag that particular seller on the website and even sue him/her if you have to. And if the website owner doesn’t heed your complaint, go ahead and sue that guy! Once, I literally had to bang on a seller’s front door, coercing him to deliver my goods. But of course, you need to make sure that he has mentioned the right address.
These rules are but a reference book for online shopping. Use your own sense of judgment to separate the good from the bad. I personally avoid shopping at portals that are relatively new, until they get a steady stream of positive consumer reviews over popular forums. The rest is up to you. Have a safe shopping experience!