Today is Cyber Monday, tis the time for online shopping to begin! But stay safe and happy shopping.
- Use a credit card instead of a debit card. Credit cards offer better protection again unauthorized purchases, you are usually only responsible for $50 worth of unauthorized purchases. Most debit cards do not offer this level of protection, protection varies by bank.
- Verify the return policy before you purchase. Make sure you verify the order is correct, shipping and handling are included, your purchase is insured and that any discounts/coupons have been applied.
- Don’t shop at stores outside the US. U.S. retailers are subject to U. S. consumer laws and offer the buyer protection whereas others countries are not required to adhere to the same laws.
- Don’t provide personal information. Even if you are promised a prize, this is usually a scam for your personal information. Don’t provide sensitive information by email, it may not be safe.
- Don’t ever provide your social security number. Don’t ever give this information out or carry it with you.
- Don’t use public Wi-Fi for making purchases. Only use secured networks. Make sure the website begins with https when ordering online, this signifies a secured network and that your information is encrypted.
If you think that your information has been stolen, file a police report IMMEDIATELY in the town where the theft occurred. Call all three national credit reporting organizations and the Social Security Administration immediately also and place a “Fraud Alert” on your name and social security number. Visit the Federal Trade Commission’s website or the Identity Theft Center for more information.
- Equifax 800-525-6285
- Experian 888-397-3742
- Trans Union 800-680-7289
- Social Security Administration 800-269-0271