Shop Safe this Holiday Season

It’s the holiday season… which means you need to be extra cautious when buying gifts online! Millions of people will be hacked in December, and most of these hacks can be traced back to online shopping. Here are a few tips to arm yourself against online theft, so you can really enjoy the season of giving:

First, ALWAYS make sure you see the little padlock at the top of your browser. This indicates that a web address is “HTTPS” or “secure.” When you see the little “s” or padlock, it means that the session you’re browsing is encrypted and the website you’re viewing is trusted and certified.

Second, use a secure payment method! Go with the traditional PayPal or use your credit card (if the website has the padlock!). Beware of sites and apps that only accept money orders, wire transfers, or checks. They’re most likely a scam!

Last, watch out for FAKE shopping apps on the App Store! Last year, hundreds of phony retail apps popped up in Apple’s App Store and Google Play Store. They tricked shoppers into downloading and using their apps to reveal all of their personal information. Counterfeit apps are becoming more popular as online shopping continues to grow in popularity.