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How safe is online shopping?

by sbaxter / December 11, 2003 4:27 AM PST

Hi! My first post here and I'm not too sure if this is the correct place to post, but if you can help me out that would be great!

I'm thinking about buying a couple of hard to find books and cds online this holiday and I'm a bit hesitant about the safety of online shopping. My buddy tells me it not safe because people can steal your credit card and information on the web. Is this true?

I love the idea and convenience of shopping online, which definitely beats the crazy crowds now. So please if you can offer me some sound advice to safely shopping online or just staight up tell me don't do it, I would appreciate it. All advice and suggestions welcomed. I'm all ears. Thank you!


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Re:How safe is online shopping? - Part 1
by Marianna Schmudlach / December 11, 2003 4:44 AM PST

Use a secure browser.
This is the software you use to navigate the Internet. Your browser should comply with industry security standards, such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). These standards scramble the purchase information you send over the Internet, helping to secure your transaction. Most computers come with a browser installed. You also can download some browsers for free over the Internet.

Shop with companies you know.
Anyone can set up shop online under almost any name. If you're not familiar with a merchant, ask for a paper catalog or brochure to get a better idea of their merchandise and services. Also, determine the company's refund and return policies before you place your order. These should be posted on the company's Web site.

Keep your password(s) private.
Be creative when you establish a password, and never give it to anyone. Avoid using a telephone number, birth date, or a portion of your Social Security number. Instead, use a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols.

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Re:How safe is online shopping? Part II
by Marianna Schmudlach / December 11, 2003 4:45 AM PST

Pay by credit or charge card.
If you pay by credit or charge card online, your transaction will be protected by the Fair Credit Billing Act. Under this law, consumers have the right to dispute charges under certain circumstances and temporarily withhold payment while the creditor is investigating them. In the event of unauthorized use of your credit or charge card, you are generally held liable only for the first $50 in charges. Some companies offer an online shopping guarantee that ensures you will not be held responsible for any unauthorized charges made online, and some cards may provide additional warranty, return and/or purchase protection benefits.

Keep a record.
Be sure to print a copy of your purchase order and confirmation number for your records. Also, you should know that the federal Mail/Telephone Order Merchandise Rule covers online orders. This means that unless states otherwise, merchandise must be delivered within 30 days; and if there are delays, the company must notify you.

Pay your bills online.
Some companies let you pay bills and check your account status online. Before you sign up for any service, evaluate how the company secures your financial and personal information. Many companies explain their security procedures on their Web site. If you don't see a security description, call or email the company and ask.

Hope this helps Happy

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Re:Re:How safe is online shopping? Part II
by Donna Buenaventura / December 11, 2003 4:50 AM PST

hehehe almost the same WinkGrin but you're really faster than lightning Cool

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Re:How safe is online shopping?
by Donna Buenaventura / December 11, 2003 4:49 AM PST

Some of the tips for safety online shopping
1. Use a secure browser.
2. Shop with companies you know.
3. Keep your password(s) private. - Do not save password or do not use Auto-complete feature.
4. Keep a record
5. Keep your personal information private.
6. Look for a company's online privacy policy.
7. Make choices.

More at Shop Safely Online

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Re:Re:How safe is online shopping?
by sbaxter / December 11, 2003 5:19 AM PST

thank you for this great information. Wow those were fast responses!I do have another question though,what about when you hear about the news of companies being hacked into and all the buyer info are compromised? This is what scares me most.

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Re:How safe is online shopping?
by Marianna Schmudlach / December 11, 2003 5:47 AM PST

By using secured servers and 128 bit encryption, online credit card purchases can be safer than using your card in a restaurant. The request for funds passes directly to the bank that issued the card, with the card number still in encrypted form. Only the institution that issued the card can see the number.

To further enhance the security of your online shopping, you can choose the security level at which Internet Explorer operates. Depending on the security level you set, you'll be notified if you're about to do something that might pose a security risk.


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Thank you, you have been most helpful!
by sbaxter / December 11, 2003 8:36 AM PST

Off I go to a new experience.

Happy holidays! Pete

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(NT) You're Welcome - Happy Holidays !
by Marianna Schmudlach / December 11, 2003 9:18 AM PST


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How safe is online shopping?
by leon4grant / March 16, 2015 8:45 PM PDT

Always use secured websites when you are transferring funds via the site.

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