In 2020 global eCommerce will account for over 2 Trillion dollars in sales. In 2020 customers are shopping online whether its to make a purchase or reserve a service.
How fast has online shopping grown? So fast! When we surveyed our clients we found that almost 90% have made an online purchase as a result of seeing an ad. Online shopping, reservations, and appointment bookings have made life much easier, and it puts us in touch with some of the best products and services.
At the top of everyone’s mind is security: how can we have a convenient shopping experience without sacrificing the safety of our personal information or without compromising access to our bank accounts or credit cards?
Online merchants and merchant related technology has become increasingly strict and increasingly sophisticated. The requirements for merchants to setup processing accounts (especially in Canada) has become more difficult than ever. Not just anyone can take your money online.
8 Tips for Safe Online Shopping
1. Only Trust Encrypted Websites
Not all ecommerce websites are best for safe online shopping. It is important to shop only on encrypted websites, and when you’re on a trusted WiFi network. You’ll want to see a padlock in the address bar. This important lock is the only way to ensure that the information your adding is encrypted and secure.
Tip: Who is this site anyway? Did you know that you can look up the owner of a website using any WHOIS service? Just type their website address into the search field and you should ideally see their company name, contact information – and that information should ideally match with what is found on their website.
2. Protect Your Personal Information
Its normal for online retailers or services to ask for additional information about your preferences. But if they’re asking for things like your Social Insurance Number then that’s a huge red flag. Normal transactions require your full name, billing address and phone number, in addition to your payment information.
Tip: Protect your login information by only logging in where others cannot see what you’re typing. Screen privacy protectors can be found in most mobile or electronics stores.
3. Create Unique Passwords For Each Website
Avoid using the same password for multiple websites. That way if your frequent flyer account gets stolen your other accounts wont get compromised.
Tip: Use Two-Factor Authentication for login. Many accounts and services allow you to setup your mobile number or an authenticator app to receive codes each time you login. This reduces the possibility that your accounts could become compromised should someone guess your password.
4. Look for the "S"
Anytime you enter your credit card information into a website you’ll want to be sure that its secured. The website should absolutely start with an https:// and not just http://.
5. Be Wary of Deals That Are Too Good To Be True
When the sales or deals are far below what they should be then this could be a sign that the site is not legitimate or the products are counterfeit. Low-priced products or even services are usually a sign that related products are coming from unqualified manufacturing points that lack regulation and safety.
6. Look For Customer Service Information
A website that doesn’t have contact information, or policy information means that they may not be credible. Openness about this information is a good sign of trustworthiness.
7. Avoid Untrusted Or Uncertain Ads and PopUps
On some websites the “next page” button or ‘call to action” is confusingly positioned among many other clickable choices. Not all of them are safe. These tactics used by scammers confuse and lure shoppers. If you’re not sure about where those buttons go then close the pop-up.
Tip: Not sure where that link is going? If you’re on a desktop computer you can hover your mouse over the link and its destination should appear in your browser status bar. If the destination is something you would expect then its likely ok to click.
8. Monitor Your Statements and Credit File
Keep close watch over your credit card and bank statements and look into anything that seems unusual. You’re looking for hidden charges and unfamiliar names.
Don’t forget to pull a free copy of your credit file at least once a year. TransUnion and Equifax are the main reporting agencies in Canada. These helpful reports will show you if you have any unknown open accounts.
Do you have questions about a link or a button that you have seen on IvonneSanchez.com or shop.ivonnesanchez.com? Our website is hosted in Canadian data centres and we use recommended encryption for both our website and third-party solutions. Whether you’re shopping for products or booking an appointment you can be sure that we have an agreement with all of our data processors and we scrutinize the security of their services. If you would like to ask a question about shopping securely please use the “Contact Us” form below, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org