Were you in line for the Black Friday deals? Did you take advantage of
shopping on Thanksgiving Day!? Don’t worry if you had too much turkey
and overslept. Cyber Monday is here and the deals are amazing! Today happens
to be the busiest online shopping day of the year. We did want to remind
you to be safe when making purchases online. Don’t become a victim
of fraud, whether it’s your personal information that is compromised
or receiving counterfeit merchandise.
Here is a list of simple rules to follow when shopping online:
- Only purchase merchandise from a reputable seller.
- Be sure there is a phone number and physical address (not a P.O. Box)
listed for the business. Give them a call to verify!
- Is there an email address? Send an email asking for additional verification.
- Check with the
Better Business Bureau in the seller’s city.
- Always find out about returns and warranties before making your purchase.
- Remember: impressive websites can be set up pretty quickly. Don’t
judge a place based on their website.
- Use a credit card rather than a personal check or money order. Credit
card payments can be disputed.
- Speaking of credit cards…make sure the Wi-Fi hotspot you are using
is secure. If not, your payment and personal information could be compromised.
- Read the fine print. Businesses might continue to charge your card for
future subscriptions or purchases simply because you failed to mark a
particular box on the screen.
- Be extra careful when purchasing tickets to an event online. Certain
venues may require the purchaser to be the one present at the actual event.
- File a report with the IC3 if you do become a victim of an internet crime.
And finally, if you’re planning to take advantage of the deals today
on your employer’s watch, we encourage you to plan your online shopping
around your lunch break. Studies show that there is a $2.5 billion loss
in productivity on Cyber Monday. Many retailers will offer the same deals
throughout the rest of the week.