Everyone knows that online shopping is the future. I mean, face it; the selections are out of this world and the bargains are unbeatable. The most magical things about online shopping is: (1) you don't have to deal with rude sales clerks. (2) You don't need to be subjected to people who are unaware of personal space while standing in line behind you, - "dude if I can smell what you had for lunch - you are too close". (3) You can spare yourself the anxiety of over populated stores and parking lots. So its definitely the golden age for online shopping. However with such an increase in E*consumerism in this digital age it is important to be smart. You don't want to hand over sensitive data to the wrong guy. So, without any further ado here are 5 tips for shopping online intelligently.
1) LOOK FOR THE PADLOCK
Never Never Ever!, buy anything online using your credit card from a site that doesn't have SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) encryption installed. You'll know if it has it because the URL for the site will start with HTTPS:// instead of just HTTP:// and an icon of a locked padlock will appear, typically in the status bar at the bottom of your Web browser or before it.
2) OVER SHARING
Keep the information to a minimum and remember No online shopping store is going to need your social security number or your birthday to do business. EVER!
3) PRIVATIZE YOUR WIFI
If you decide to go out with your laptop to shop, you'll be on a Wi-Fi connection. Only use the wireless connection if you access the Web over a virtual private network (VPN) connection. If you don't get one from your employer, you can set up a free one with AnchorFree Hotspot Shield, if you're willing to put up with the ads. Stay away from unfamiliar hotspots. Stick to known networks, even if they're free, like those found at Starbucks.
4) GIFT CARDS
Gift Cards are the most requested holiday gift every year, and this year will be no exception. Stick to the SOURCE when you buy one; scammers like to auction off gift cards on sites like eBay with little or no funds on them upon arrival.
5) STRONG PASSWORDS
Its like beating a dead horse but make sure to utilize an un-crackable passwords, it's never more important than when banking and shopping.
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