Protect Yourself From Online Identity Thieves


Filed under: Financial tips


Senior Couple Using Laptop To Shop Online

If you’ve grown tired of crowds, long lines, and inconvenient operating hours, then maybe you have replaced mall shopping with online shopping. It’s a trend that continues to grow, and it’s probably not ever going away.

But unfortunately, online shopping does create vulnerabilities. Whereas a pickpocket might snatch your purse or wallet in a crowded mall, online thieves have their own methods of ripping off innocent consumers. Online shopping doesn’t have to be dangerous, but you should definitely follow all of these guidelines to keep your money safe.

Use your home connection. Public connections, such as the wifi offered in your local coffee shop, are generally open and unprotected. That means anyone else on the network could potentially view information you send (such as your credit card number). Do your online shopping from home or other trusted, non-public networks.

Update your equipment. Periodically, the developers who designed your smartphone, tablet, or computer will notice potential security problems. They release updates to fix these problems, so remember to install those updates when your device notifies you about them.

Only shop on safe websites. You should always check to be sure a website is secure before entering any personal information during check-out. Look for “https” at the beginning of the address, or a lock symbol in the address bar.

Only give information that is necessary to complete a purchase. You would expect to enter a credit card number in order to purchase something online. But no one needs your Social Security number. Exercise caution and suspicion any time you give away personal information online.

Don’t use your debit card. Use a credit card that offers fraud protection, not your debit card. If your checking account is compromised, your entire balance could be gone within a matter of hours.

Check your credit card statements. When your credit card statement arrives each month, check it for unfamiliar charges. Even better, learn to access your account online and monitor it more often than once per month. That way you can report suspicious activity much more quickly.

Remember: If it seems too good to be true, then it probably isn’t true. There are good deals online, but anything that appears “too good to be true” is possibly a scam.

For more financial planning help, call us to schedule an appointment. We specialize in working with retirees, and those planning for retirement, and can help you with budgeting, setting financial goals, or any other questions you might have about your finances.



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This information has been provided by a licensed insurance professional and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting insurance professional. The statements and opinions expressed are those of the author and are subject to change at any time. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, presenting the insurance professional makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. This material has been prepared for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, accounting, legal, tax, trust and estate, or investment advice. Infinite Wealth Advisors is not an investment advisory firm.  Investment Advisory Services provided by NAMCOA® – Naples Asset Management Company®, LLC, a federally registered investment advisor, website: www.NAMCOA.com .