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Opinion - Opinion
Shopping online: Use cautionTell North Platte what you think

According to the National Retail Federation, online shoppers are expected to spend more than $82 billion this holiday season. While this modern convenience can save time and money, you must take care to avoid hidden hazards.

Being aware of website security features and following a few user guidelines will help ensure you have a safe online shopping experience.


You may be tempted to ignore a siteís privacy policy, but itís worth your time to take a few minutes to read it. The privacy policy should tell you what personal information is being gathered and how it will be used. If you donít feel comfortable with the terms, shop elsewhere.

Shop with companies you know and trust. However, be wary of pop-up solicitations while you shop on popular websites. The pop-ups arenít necessarily connected to the web page you are visiting Ė treat them as unsolicited messages and close them.

Not all online retail sites are created equal. Before you begin the process of checking-out, look for indicators the site is secure before entering personal information.

At check-out, the name of the URL (web address) should be preceded by the letters https. A closed padlock or key icon should appear on the browserís status bar. These signs let you know your information will be encrypted.

Donít complete a transaction on an open or public Wi-Fi network.

Before you log-off

When finishing a transaction, itís important to print and save receipts and records of your online transactions. Donít allow sites to store your credit card information. And, always log out after your shopping session.

Remember - never give personal information to sites linked from unsolicited emails or unsolicited pop-ups.

For more information, visit our website at ago.ne.gov, call our Consumer Protection Hotline at (800) 727-6432 or follow us on Twitter @AGBruning.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 11/25/2013
Copyright © 2013 northplattebulletin.com - All rights reserved.
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