Online shopping is almost inevitable in this day and age. During the holidays, many people want to skip the lines and cold weather and do their shopping in their PJ’s. However, with the luxury of online shopping comes the risk of identity theft. Unfortunately there is nothing you can do to completely avoid this risk, here are some tips to remember this holiday season.
1. Keep your software, computers, and electronics up to date.
Make sure you stay up to date on all of the protective features you use on your electronics. Having an up-to-date spyware can prevent you from having your identity stolen.
2. Don’t overshare.
If a website asks for your social security number, it’s probably a scam. Only give out necessary information to online shopping sites. Also, avoid sharing your date of birth, phone number, birth date and other identifying information on your social media accounts. This will help prevent identity fraud.
3. Check your transaction history weekly.
Consistently check your transaction history for your debit and credit cards and look for suspicious behavior. If you see any purchases you don’t remember making, notify your bank or credit card company immediately.
4. Reduce your mail.
The less mail you receive at your home, the less likely someone can steal your identity. Choose to opt out of credit card company’s pre-approved offers by calling 1-888-5OPT-OUT and following the prompts. Also, try setting up automatic payments to pay your bills. You don’t want your personal information to get into the wrong hands.
5. Be a skeptic.
If a website doesn’t look legitimate, move on. It’s better to miss out on an awesome sale than to fall for a scam artist ill-legitimate website. When possible, try to only shop from well-known retailers when shopping online or local businesses that you know and trust.