Tis the season to be scammed! While most of us honest folks are doing some of our seasonal shopping online, some bad guys are out trying to scam us and steal from us. These scam artists want to obtain our identities, social security numbers, and our credit card information. So to make our holiday season merry and bright, there are some simple precautions we should all take this season.

  • Purchase items through well-known retailers you can contact via phone if necessary.
  • Use a separate e-mail account for online shopping. Take advantage of the free accounts from Yahoo! and Google.
  • Check for a little yellow lock at the bottom right corner of your browser window when making a purchase. This indicates a secure transaction. But beware! Some fraud sites can duplicate this security feature.
  • Make sure your security software is up to date.
  • Never give out personal financial information in response to an e-mail, including charity donations.
  • Check bank and credit card statements frequently for suspicious transactions. Most credit card companies either have online accounts or phone verification to check your balance.

Have a safe and enjoyable holiday season.
[tags]holiday, shopping, scams, credit cards, precautions, security[/tags]