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How to shop online safely ?

Online eCommerce is a growing business. With the help of internet you can purchase almost anything online at a reasonable price and services like free shipping make this online shopping further more interesting. Online payment methods are too easy, if you have a debit or a credit card, you can shop online virtually anything.

But there is also a dark side of online shopping. Almost everyone knows how to shop online but very small fraction of the people know how to shop online safely. We are least concerned about the safety of online shopping. Our one small mistake can make us bankrupt. Thousands of people are scammed online and the money they lose is really big.

If you think only purchasing goods online from a reputed site is considered as online safety then you are doing a very big mistake. Even if you are shopping from a genuine site, your credit card info can easily be stolen. In this article we will discuss on tips to shop online safely.

The very common method used by hackers and online thieves to steal information of any computer user is Phishing. Phishing is a process in which a site looking similar to any online shopping site is setup and user is asked to visit the fake(similar looking) site. On phishing page, user selects his or her product and selects the payment method and types in his or her credit card information. One a victim presses Submit button, all of the credit card information is sent to the online thief and he misuses your credit card information. By creating similar appearing page, the convict easily is able to fool the victim.

If getting fooled online through phishing is easy then not getting into phishing is also too easy. To prevent phishing, you should avoid reading fake mails and visiting fake website. To know whether the email you are reading is fake or genuine, all you have to do is to look at the address from which you received email. If it appears misspelled or any similar error is there then it’s sure the mail you’re reading is fake. Nowadays hackers get succeed into sending fake emails from REAL EMAIL ADDRESS, so in this case to find whether the email is fake or not you have to check it’ content, if it appears too promising then it’s fake for sure. Also try not to click on any link inside fake email since it may contain malicious software or can take you to phishing page. Finding whether the website you are accessing is fake or not is also very easy. Just look at address bar of your browser and check website address carefully, if it is misspelled or slight different from actual website then it’s sure the website is a fake website intend for Phishing.

Beside phishing, your credit card and other sensitive information can also be known by hackers through malicious virus programs such as keyloggers, keylogger stores the log of pressed keys(including credit or debit card information) in computer and then sends it to the convict who misuses the information. To avoid getting trapped into viruses, install an reputed antivirus program and update it regularly and try not to download suspicious programs from internet.

Till now we discussed about ways through which sensitive information such as credit or debit card information can be known by a wrong person who can misuse it. But what if the site from where you want to shop is not duplicate of anyother site , in this case how would you find whether it will send you product after payment or just take money and do nothing ? So to over come from such situation you should first check whether the site from where you have decided to purchase any product is a reputed site or not. You can check online reviews of any online shopping site to ensure it has good services. Another way through which it can be known whether a particular site can be trusted or not is by looking at URL of payment and login page. The URL of a payment or any other page where you enter sensitive information such as user name or password should be like https://www.example.com/something . If there is http:// instead of https:// then the site might not be a trust worthy site because https is considered as a safe secure protocol while http might not. If https protocol is present then make sure that site as genuine SSL certificate. Usually a secure site might have security certificate link and/or privacy seal.

You should also be cautious when you are entering your personal information from any public shared computer such as computer in cybercafe. In such computers never save your personal sensitive information such as card details and password.

Beside all these suggestion I personally recommend all the people to install and use a Linux Operating system such as Ubuntu for very purpose of safe online shopping because Linux has almost zero viruses and hence you might stay safe.

If you follow above mentioned tips then you might experience a safe online shopping.

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