Here are some basic tips to keep risks to a minimum when making a transaction online.
2. Protect your computer against viruses or other threats. Take this advice seriously. Make sure that your computer has an antivirus or antispyware software installed. Encrypt your wireless connection at home if possible. An antivirus program is like an insurance company. You have to start protecting yourself before things happen. Otherwise it is useless to install an antivirus program when you get infected already with a virus.
When I say you need an antivirus program it doesn’t mean that just because you have the program installed, it is enough. No. You need make sure you have an active subscription so you receive an updated definition files and protection daily.
3. Keep your computer and browser updated. Install all critical and security Windows updates when possible. Do not ignore or wait too long to install those Windows updates pending on your computer.
Create strong passwords. Use a combination of numbers, alphabets, lowercase, uppercase and symbols. Do not use “Dog123” or “Password123” as a password. That’s lame and lazy. Do not use passwords that are easy, short and can be found in the dictionary.
4. Type the web address yourself. Do not click on email links to get into the website you want to shop no matter how legit the email appears to be.
5. Before you enter sensitive data on a web page, ensure that the site uses encryption, a security measure that helps protect your data. Signs of encryption include a web address with https (“s” stands for secure) and a closed padlock beside it. (The lock might also be in the lower right corner of the window.)
6. Never use public computers to shop or pay bills. Do them only at home.
7. Use common sense.