Here's the online shopping advice from the BBB's Denise Groene, which we talked about on Monday's 4:00 Show.
· Confirm your online purchase is secure – shoppers should always look in the address box for the “s” in https://www. And in the lower-right hand corner for the “lock” symbol before paying. If there are any doubts about a site, BBB recommend right-clicking anywhere on the page and select “properties”. This will let you see the real URL (website address) and the dialog box will reveal if the site is not encrypted.
· Pay with a credit card – It’s best to use a credit card, because under Federal law, you can dispute the charges if you don’t receive the item. You also have dispute rights if there are unauthorized charges on your credit card and many card issuers have “zero liability” policies under which the card holder pays nothing if someone steals the credit card number and uses it.
· Protect your computer – A computer should always have the most recent updates installed for spam filters, anti-virus and anti-spyware software and a secure firewall.
· Shop on trustworthy websites – Be cautious of pop up ads of “too good to be true” offers. Check on the sellers reputation and record for customer satisfaction. It’s a good idea to look for the BBB seal and other widely-recognized seals on retailer websites, but make sure they are real (some rogue sites plagiarize seals to look legitimate.