6 Essential Tips for Safe Online Shopping

The turkey sandwiches are in the fridge, and you didn’t argue with your uncle. It’s time to knock out that gift list, and if you’re like millions of Americans, you’re probably shopping online.

Scoring a deal on a TV this Cyber Monday seems sensible if your hobbies don’t include being crushed by mobs or fighting for parking at 6 a.m., but buyer beware. If you’re not following safe online shopping practices, a scammer could get your credit card number faster than you can say “identity theft.”

Hackers know that many people are buying on websites, and it’s likely why hacking spikes this time of year. Thankfully, these safe online shopping features from Firefox are easy to use all year round.

Tip 1: Check the Green Lock in Your Browser

That hot new site might have great deals but check for the green lock in the address bar of your browser before entering any information. If you use Firefox, a green lock at the top corner of the URL bar means the site is encrypted, so you can send data securely. If you see a yellow or broken lock, that’s a big red flag. Either way, make sure the site you’re on is trustworthy.

Tip 2: Autofill Safely

Your shopping cart is full, and you’re ready to do damage. Auto-populating your credit card can save time, but it can also leave you exposed. With Firefox, you can auto-populate with a secure browser or forget it without a trace. It’s one of the many ways you can keep your data private on the web.

Tip 3: Be a Private Shopper  

There’s private shopping when a person named Basel picks out your clothes, and there’s private online shopping. At Firefox, we’re about the latter. One safe online shopping tip is purchasing in private browsing mode. In private mode, Firefox never saves your searches, passwords, cookies or history – say goodbye to stalker ads.

Tip 4: Shop Smarter with Price Wise  

A great deal shouldn’t cost you the most valuable thing you have – your time. Stop opening endless tabs and wasting time hitting refresh. The new Price Wise experiment from Firefox Test Pilot will track prices for you across five top US retailers: Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Home Depot and Best Buy. Get an alert every time the price drops and score the best bargain without the stress.

Tip 5: Keep Tabs on Wish Lists

They might as well call it “The Most Stressful Time of the Year,” with all the wish lists you’re juggling. Take a deep breath. Firefox Email Tabs lets you select multiple tabs and automatically populates them into a Gmail message. You can pick one tab or select them all. Use this feature to make a wish list or tell your family and friends to spread the stress-free vibes.

Tip 6: Watch for Hackers

The best defense is a good offense, but not everyone wants to check their accounts all the time. If only there were a service that would alert you to hacks and let you check for breaches…oh wait, there’s Firefox Monitor. Just enter your email to check if your account has been part of a breach and sign up for alerts. Also, remember that public wifi is almost never secure. Stay away from it when you are shopping or banking.

While you may not be able to control the urge to buy things you don’t need, you can help keep your data secure with safe online shopping tips from Firefox.

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