Tips for Online Holiday Shopping

The holiday shopping season is in full force, consumers are scrambling to find the right gift at the right price, and what they can’t find in stores they search for online. With $16.8 billion already spent online in the first 33 days of the holiday season, e-tailers have found additional ways to keep the momentum going. A couple important dates to remember include December 17 or “Free Shipping Day”, also if you’re planning on ordering gifts online at the last minute, remember that December 22 is the last day for Express mail service.

In addition to the dates, keep in mind a few easy tips Trend Micro suggests to stay safe while clicking from site to site.

  • Know your merchant – Only shop online with merchants you are familiar with.  If you choose to purchase something from an online site that isn’t recognizable, please do your research.  The Better Business Bureau is a good place to check the legitimacy of an online shopping site.
  • Keep an eye out for phishing emails – Phishing is the practice where a cyber criminal pretends to be from a legitimate organization and sends misleading emails requesting personal data. There are higher volumes of phishing e-mails during the holiday season. Cyber criminals can easily make their messages look like legitimate order confirmations or store promotions to obtain your personal information.
  • Avoid the temptation of keeping your credit card information (or other secure information) on your hard drive – if someone gets on your computer or if you lose your laptop, the criminal will have easy access to this information. 
  • First line of defense – Use the most up to date and comprehensive software like Trend Micro’s Titanium 2011, which offers an easy-to-use interface with the most advanced cloud technology protection that automatically updates in real-time.