Online Holiday Shopping Safety Tips

By Karin Stewart ~

Holiday shopping might look a bit differently for most of us this year. We may be looking to more on-line shopping as we stay safer-at-home. Unfortunately, more on-line shopping means more opportunities to potentially fall victim to on-line scammers and fraudsters.

There are some things you can do, however, to protect yourself and stay ahead of online scammers and identity thieves by using the following tips to help protect your personal information while shopping online.

Use official retailer websites and apps to shop. Avoid those shopping posts found in social media or links sent in emails. Always verify the website address at the top of the internet browser to make sure you are shopping on a secure, safe website.

Ship to a secure location. Instead of having packages delivered to your doorstep, considering using the delivery lockers service offered by companies such as Amazon, UPS and FedEx.

Karin Stewart

Karin Stewart

Avoid using the feature of storing your credit card details on your accounts.  While this feature may add some convenience for future purchasing, it can also pose a risk if the retailer site is hacked. Adding strong passwords helps protect from would-be hackers too.

Retailers will not ask for your social security number or date of birth, so if you are asked for personal details, beware. The best option is to walk away from the purchase if you are asked for that kind of information.

Lastly, pay close attention to your bank and credit card statements. Check for fraudulent changers at least once a week and report any concerns to your bank or credit card company’s fraud department. Being proactive and vigilant can protect yourself and keep your holiday season enjoyable, safe and worry-free.

This information was brought to you by Age-Friendly Jefferson County, a strategic planning project focused on developing and implementing strategies to create inclusive, livable communities through sustainable partnerships and integrated services. For more information, contact us at kstewart@jeffco.us or call 303-271-4251.

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