Monday, December 19, 2016

5 Shopping Tips for the Last Days of the Christmas Season

Photo Courtesy of Pixabay

1. Use a credit card or cash for all of your purchases

Many brick-and-mortar stores have not upgraded to the new clip cards and the use of fake card skimmers increases this time of year. At least of you run into a fake card skimmer, the credit card transaction will be refunded to you, whereas the debit card transaction might not be.

2. Do not use public Wi-Fi spots for online transactions

Yes, we can all say that free public Wi-Fi is great, but the connections are not secure, so it fine if you just want to catch up on your favorite blog or news website, but DON'T use it for purchasing items online. If you do, you run the risk of a hacker capturing your personal information and your credit card number. Instead of ringing in a happy new year, you could kiss your bank account (and many other things) goodbye.

3. Complete face-to-face transactions in a Safe Space

If you are buying items from online services such as Craigslist, meet your proposed seller in a well populated area, such as the parking lot of your local police department. The Hazlet, New Jersey Police Department has been offering this service for a while now and it gives people an extra piece of mind. Contact your local law enforcement agency to see if they offer this great public service.

4. Use 2 Factor Authentication on all of your online accounts

Yeah, I know....2FA is a hassle, but it will keep your accounts secure and with the data breaches exploding like crazy this year, it is better to be proactive in securing your information than to end up getting hacked and becoming part of the millions of people who have experienced identity theft and are still trying to recover from it.

5. Keep your devices safe and secure

Make sure that all of your devices are secure and have the latest software updates. 

Double-check that the firewall on your computer is enabled and your virus protection is updated as well. Don't visit shopping websites that don't have the "https:" in front of their address and consider using password management software such as LastPass or Dashline.

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