If you want to have a safe and secure shopping experience when you are purchasing items online, there are some things you can do. One of the first things to do is to look for a lock icon on the browser's status, or a url address that begins "https" (the s means secure). These initial things can help save you grief in the future. You should initiate the transaction through the organization's website and never provide financial information through an email or a pop-up window.
Additionally, you should know that the company you are dealing with has a physical address and phone number that are really in existence. This way, you will know you can contact them with questions or problems. It can be a good idea to try to deal with companies that also have regular physical stores as well as online versions of those stores.
You should never pay with cash and you should not pay with a debit card either. Using a credit card or a charge card will offer your more protection for a safe and secure shopping experience. The Fair Credit Billing Act gives you the right to dispute certain kinds of charges under specified circumstances. In addition, you are usually not liable for more than the first $50 that is charged to your card if unauthorized use occurs. Some charge cards have additional warranty protections, so you will want to check that out. This is also why it is important to know what you are purchasing. If you don't get what you expected and you want to return it, you should not be charged.
However, you need to check out the terms and policies to make sure that your item can be returned for a full refund. You will also want to find out who will pay the shipping if something should be returned. It is also important that you understand when you are likely to receive the shipment. If you have not received it within 30 days after it was ordered, you will want to make some inquiries.
For a safe and secure shopping experience, you should never respond to an email for your financial information. Don't even click on an email that is requesting you to send that kind of information through email. The email systems are not designed to be secure, so you should not send private financial information through them.
By being careful and understanding who you are dealing with, you should be able to have a safe and secure shopping experience every time you shop on the internet.