15 Effective Ways to Outsmart Common Online Shopping Scams

Undoubtedly, online shopping has made life easier, but it has also contributed to the rise of con artists. Staying safe online is crucial, whether it be avoiding phony websites or falling foul of email frauds. Here are 15 strategies to guard against typical internet buying frauds:

Use Reputable Websites

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The best way to keep yourself safe when shopping online is to shop from well-known and reputable websites. You can use familiar websites from your favorite high street brands or check websites such as Trustpilot for the authenticity of the site.

Check for HTTPS

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If you’re unsure if a site is reputable or not you should check the URL to make sure it looks official.  Even some stores that are familiar to you can be cloned by scammers using slight variations on the official site. Reputable website URL begins with “https://” indicating a secure connection. 

Be Wary of Unfamiliar Brands

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Another telltale symptom of a fraudulent website is to look out for badly designed layouts with typos or grammatical problems. It is important that you exercise extra caution when inputting personal information on websites that do not use encryption, as many scam sites do.

Read Reviews

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Taking time to read customer reviews is a good way to see if a website sounds reliable. Be sure to look on third party sites for authentic reviews rather than on the website itself. Most third-party sites ask reviewers to leave some personal information to ensure it’s an authentic review. 

Beware of Deals That Are Too Good to Be True

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If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Even when you’re struggling for money you should be  cautious of heavily discounted products from unknown sellers. Scammers will entice people with special deals but no item will be delivered. 

Verify the Seller’s Contact Information

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Authentic websites will disclose  valid contact information, including a phone number and physical address. To be sure the seller is genuine, you can confirm this data by giving the number a call or looking it up online.. Always be  wary of sellers who only offer anonymous contact methods as they likely have something to hide. 

Use Secure Payment Methods

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Only use secure payment methods such as credit cards or PayPal. These options often offer better protection against fraud compared to debit cards or wire transfers. If you only have a debit card, check that your bank protects you from fraud. 

Avoid Public Wi-Fi

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As well as using secure payments, you should seek out trusted internet connections. Avoid making online purchases over public Wi-Fi networks as they are more susceptible to hackers who can capture your payment details. 

Keep Your Software Updated

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Always keep your computer’s operating system, browser, and security software up-to-date to protect against malware and other threats. Norton 360 Deluxe and Bitdefender are good options but you can seek online guides for the most up to date malware protection. 

Monitor Your Statements

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It’s always best to sift out scam  sites before you purchase but to check that you haven’t let one through the net you should check your bank account regularly. Checking your bank and credit card statements for any unauthorized transactions will enable you to report suspicious activity immediately.

Ignore Pressure Tactics

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Scammers often employ urgency tactics like limited-time offers or vanishing inventory to pressure you into a rushed purchase.! A legitimate business will allow you ample time to consider your purchase so don’t be fooled by the fraudsters. .

Never Share Financial Information Directly

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Legitimate businesses won’t ask for your complete credit card details or banking information via email or text message. They will ask for selected information through a secure connection, often using encryption services for added security. 

Avoid Unsolicited Contact

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Be cautious of unsolicited emails, texts, or social media messages promoting deals or urging you to click on links. These could be phishing attempts to steal your personal information and will generally have irregular email addresses with slightly different website addresses that the brand they’re impersonating. 

Track Your Package

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Legitimate sellers will provide tracking information for your purchase.  If you cannot track your package or the seller is unresponsive about delays, this could be a sign it’s a scam site. You can look at the brand’s tracking and delivery policy, that should be on the website, to see if it sounds legitimate. 

Change Your Passwords Regularly 

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Scammers do their best to hack into website accounts and emails in a bid to capture your bank details and personal confirmation. For this reason, it’s vital that you always choose a sites like “Have I Been Pwnd?” which will tell you if a company that has your personal date, such as a utility company or a store, has been hacked. If a company has been hacked then your personal information is at risk but changing your password can limit the chances of your being targeted. 

The 10 Most Reliable Car Brands According to Mechanics

When choosing a car, one of the most crucial factors is reliability. But what exactly does it mean when we say a car is reliable? Reliability refers to the vehicle’s ability to perform consistently well over time with minimal issues. A reliable car requires fewer repairs, is cost-effective to maintain, and offers peace of mind to the owner. In this article, we delve into the ten most reliable car brands according to mechanics, explaining why these brands are trusted and highlighting endorsements from institutions, car experts, and reputable websites. The 10 Most Reliable Car Brands According to Mechanics

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