At Take Flight we take every precaution we can to protect the identity, personal information, and financial data of our customers. Unfortunately not all companies take the measures we do. With this in mind we decided to write this blog specifically for our valued customers and fans outlining the two most important steps you can take to protect yourself when purchasing online:
#1. Before purchasing from a company online research them and see what you find. What have other customers said about that company’s products and their online purchasing experience? Chances are that if people liked shopping from that store it will be a good experience for you. But if other people had problems then you should be cautious. During your search look for other information about the company as well. Find the company’s social sites and/or partner and affiliate sites. A lot can be told about a company based on their outlook and who they associate with.
#2. Make sure to always use a credit card when purchasing online – NEVER use a debit card. This in and of itself can be the single most powerful thing you can do to protect yourself and your finances when making online purchases. Most major credit cards have fraud protection policies that refund your money to you if a seller turns out to be fraudulent. On the contrary, making online purchases with your debit card withdraws money directly from your checking account. As such, money stolen through debit cards can usually not be recovered.
Below are other signs you can look for that show that a website is secure and a company is trustworthy to purchase from.
- No pop-up ads
- No unsolicited emails
- The company has a physical address and phone number
- The site has a return policy
- The site features a padlock or unbroken key icon
- The site has a privacy statement
- An “https:” starts the web address when you check out
- The site sends you order confirmation emails and updates when you make a purchase
Each online retailer is different in how they interact with and treat their customers. But regardless of who you purchase from online, if you research a company beforehand, make purchases using a credit card, and look for other signs that an online retailer is credible, you will have the best chanced of having a good online buying experience.