IT Security: Online Holiday Shopping
Tis the Season to be Cautious
Unfortunately, this is also the time unscrupulous websites may attempt to scam you by selling counterfeit products, stealing your credit card information or failing to deliver anything. In this newsletter we will cover some of the dangers of shopping online and ways to protect ourselves.
A scammer can easily set up a website that appears to be a legitimate store by simply copying the look of other, well-known stores. Some of these websites may be fake.
Indicators of fraudulent websites include:
- There is no phone number to call for sales or support-related questions.
- The website domain name is different than the domain name it uses for email addresses or other contact information.
- The website uses poor grammar or spelling.
- The website is an exact replica of a well-known website you have used in the past, but the website domain name or the name of the store is slightly different.
Be smart with your credit card. This involves keeping an eye on your credit card statements to identify suspicious charges. Debit cards take money directly from your bank account, and if fraud has been committed it is far more difficult to get your money back. Finally, several credit cards give you the option of generating unique card number for every online purchase, or perhaps consider a service like PayPal where you do not have to expose your credit card with every online purchase. Check your credit card company to see what additional services they offer for online purchases.