Tips on How to stay safe while shopping online

Online shopping has become a popular way to purchase items without the hassles of traffic and crowds. 
However, the internet has unique risks, so it is important to take steps to protect yourself when shopping online.

 The internet offers convenience not available from other shopping outlets. From the comfort of your home, you can search for items from multiple vendors, compare prices with a few mouse clicks, and make purchases without waiting in line.

However, the internet is also convenient for attackers, giving them multiple ways to access the personal and financial information of unsuspecting shoppers. Attackers who are able to obtain this information may use it for their own financial gain, either by making purchases themselves or by selling the information to someone else.

The attackers can target online shoppers in several ways. But there are three most common ways by which  attackers can take advantage of online shoppers.

Creating rogue sites and sparm email messages

Cyber attackers can create malicious websites that resmble an authentic and legitimate  website in other to deceive unsuspecting shoppers. The attackers create the rogue sites to convince  shoppers to supply thier financial and personal information.

Intercepting Insecure transactions

A shopping site that fails to use encryption, can expose shoppers to attackers and they  may be able to intercept your information as it is transmitted.

Targeting vulnerable computers

If you do not take steps to protect your computer from viruses or other malicious code, an attacker may be able to gain access to your computer and all of the information on it.

Tips On How to Protect Yourself from attackers

  1. Shope and do business with reputable vendors– Before supplying  any personal or financial information, make sure that you are interacting with a reputable, established vendor. Some attackers may try to trick you by creating malicious websites that appear to be legitimate, so you should verify the legitimacy before supplying any information.
  2. Ensure your information is being encrypted by vendor site – Many sites use secure sockets layer to encrypt information. Indications that your information will be encrypted include a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) that begins with “https:” instead of “http:” and a padlock icon. If the padlock is closed, the information is encrypted. 
  3. Be wary of emails asking you to supply personal and or financial information.-Attackers might send you email with some juicy offer and the mail might have the identity of a known person or a firm on your mailing list. Stay away from such mails. Legitimate businesses will not solicit this type of information through email. Do not provide sensitive information through email.
  4. Use Credit card or low-limit temporary debit cards.-In other not to exposure your main account through the use of your card, you can choose to acquire a special card for online purchase. Also you can opt to use credit cards as they offer some protection due to some laws that limit your liability.
  5. Be sure of your shopping app settings- Find  out what the vendor does with your data. This is because you are responsible for every of your payment made through your shopping app.
  6. Always Check vendor’s website privacy policy – you need to do this before supplying any information. You need to understand how your information is stored or being used.

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