Most consumers plan to spend their money online over the holidays. In their, “2017 Annual Holiday Survey,” independent research company, Deloitte, reveals 51 percent of people surveyed will opt for shopping online over shopping in-store this holiday season. This is the first-time holiday spending online will exceed brick and mortar store spending.
“It’s hard to beat the convenience of online shopping,” says Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s largest independent homeowners insurance agency.
By shopping online, consumers can avoid the chaos of malls and crowded stores. The frustration of parking and they are not restricted by store hours. Also, shopping online offers loads of great deals, unique finds and plenty of inventory.
With the increase of online spending comes a higher risk of becoming a cybercrime victim. So, here are some ways to avoid online threats this holiday season.
Use a secure internet connection when making a purchase. Avoid making purchases on a public wi-fi connection.
Make sure the website is secure. Look for the little padlock icon in the address bar or a URL that starts with “https” instead of “http,” the “s” stands for secure.
Check for well-known security labels such as DigiCert, VeriSign and other seals.
Create strong passwords. USA Today explains, “Many opt for a passphrase instead of a password, which is typically a long sequence of strung-together words, but perhaps with a number and symbol in there too. For example, the sentence “My dog Eddie has a birthday May 15!” could be used to create a passphrase like “Md3habM15!
Make sure to change your password on a regular basis or after a data breach with an online retailer.
Shop using a credit card. Credit card companies offer consumer protection policies making it easier to dispute fraudulent charges.
“If you are making a lot of purchases, it is good to regularly review your bank and credit card account statements for discrepancies,” says Buck with GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s leading independent homeowners insurance company.
Use common sense and avoid a deal “too good to be true.”
Buy from trusted sources, shop from brands and sources you are familiar with using.
Be a savvy shopper and read the fine print for return policies.
Beware of phishing scams. A popular one this time of year is an email claiming to be from a package delivery service including links to tracking information. Clinking on the links can put you at risk for malware or identity theft.
“Thanksgiving is an ideal time to express my gratitude to our phenomenal independent agents and their staff for all their hard work to make GreatFlorida Insurance a success. Also, a big thanks to all our customers. It is our honor and pleasure to serve you and your families,” Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance.
The post Online Shopping Protection appeared first on The GreatFlorida Insurance Blog.