Shopping, The Internet, and You
Shopping online is one of the great conveniences of our time, a seemingly endless range of goods and prices, just a few clicks away from being delivered to your door. However, there are times when you must stand back from this technological wonder that has turned into a commonplace process, and just check out what it is that you’re doing.
Basically it is a financial transaction you may be entering, and shopping online currently is a business involving tens of billions of pounds. This sort of money, rather like a drop of blood in miles of ocean can attract sharks, can attract a whole range of criminal classes.
There is no need for paranoia, but a few simple things to bear in mind when you are looking to “embark on a financial transaction”, that is, buying on line.
Firstly, make sure you’re happy with the site you are on. If it is new to you, and not a well-known site such as Amazon, or John Lewis, perhaps a quick look at any reviews, if they have any. Does it have a returns policy, and a physical address? If there is a phone number, try it and see if it’s genuine.
We all love a bargain, but if something seems like such a bargain that you can’t believe it, then don’t. If it is too good to be true, then it probably is, don’t be suckered in.
If you have got to the stage of making a purchase, you will have to enter some personal information, remember, personal information is like money, look after it carefully.
The seller needs your address and your payment, not your date of birth, or any details about your bank account, and no-one will legitimately ask you for your pin number, not even your bank.
The last three figures of the security code on the back of your credit card is as in depth as anyone needs to go.
Always use tour credit card ahead of your debit card. Should anything go wrong with purchase, the credit card company has an interest in helping to put it right, because it is in effect, their money that you have spent!
You are protected by the Consumer Credit Act, and should the seller prove fraudulent, or go out business, your credit card company should reimburse you the majority of the amount lost.
It is prudent to check your credit card statement promptly and carefully each month to make sure nothing has gone amiss, and if it should, to notify the credit card company as soon as possible.