Posted by: bhalley | 12/13/2010

Ordering Online – Some Precautions

It is the holiday season.  Many of us order online and have gifts sent to our loved ones.  When ordering online there are several precautions you should take.

1.  Setup and use of a free e-mail address.  There are a number of free e-mail providers like Yahoo and Microsoft’s Hotmail.  The reason for this is to protect your home e-mail address from SPAM, if you get a vendor that sells your address.  I have become the victim of this one just recently.  My wife made a purchase and used my home e-mail address for the purchase and now I am getting spam because they sold my address.

2.  Method of Payment.  There are a number of ways to pay for an item.  You can use a credit card, debit card, online check, or online payment company like PayPal.  The considerations of method depend on the protection that the choice has.  For instance, most credit cards have either a 45 or 60-day protection against fraud and purchase issues.  I would strongly recommend either a credit card or online company as they provide the best guarantees.

3.  Information Requested. What information is the site requesting when you place the order?  If they ask for a social security number or birth-date they are asking for too much information.

4.  Username and Password.   When setting up an account I would not use same username and password associated with your e-mail and financial accounts.  Many people use the same username and/or password with other accounts.  This can create problems if your password gets compromised because they can try logging on to other sites to see if you have accounts with them.

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