E-Consumer Tips - Top 10 Tips

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  1. Pick a Card - Just One Card
    Using just one credit card when buying online lets you track your purchases. Use a card with a low credit limit to lower your risk. Don't use an ATM or debit card.
  2. Know the E-business
    Use only reputable e-businesses with a street address and phone number, so you can contact them directly with your questions.
  3. Read the Privacy Policy – Big Browser is Watching
    Don't assume you're anonymous. Web sites can track your browsing activities. Read the e-business's privacy policy before you type in any personal information. Look for opportunities to "opt-out" of letting the company send you marketing communications or share your personal information with others.
  4. Lock In Security
    When buying online, look for an unbroken lock symbol in the status bar at the bottom of your Web browser and "https" at the beginning of the Web site address. This means your personal information is encrypted or scrambled so no one can read it during transmission.
  5. Avoid E-Voyages of No Return
    Before you buy, review the company's return policy, product warranty and delivery information provided on the Web site. Call the company directly if you have further questions.
  6. Don't Lose Your Sense of Identity
    Think twice before providing personal information such as your Social Security number, which can be the key that opens the door to identity theft. If you provide personal information, check that the Web site address starts with "https" and your browser displays the lock symbol.
  7. Kids Can Be Cool Consumers
    Children should check with a parent before giving out personal or family information online. Parents should talk to kids about privacy issues. Make the Internet a family affair.
  8. Keep a Paper Trail
    Remember to keep a record of all online transactions.
  9. Can't Get No Satisfaction?
    If you don't get what you paid for, contact the e-business. If you're not satisfied, call your credit card company and the Department of Consumer Affairs at 1-800-952-5210.
  10. If It Sounds Too Good to be True ...
    Say "scram" to scams by steering clear of get-rich-quick pitches and false advertising claims. A slick-looking site might be bogus, so don't judge a company by its homepage.