Jun 29, 2015

Online Shopping: Be Secure!


So, you’re on the way to becoming a tried, tested and very much converted online shopper.

No more queues at the checkout and crowded car parks for you. You’re now making the very great majority of your purchases from the comfort of your own home and letting someone else do all the work.

Which includes bringing whatever it is you’ve purchased to you, direct to your front door.

Now that’s living.

And it’s set to get even better. Because, as far as online shopping goes, the only limit to what can be offered to the consumer is the imagination of the supplier.

Because if you want it, then someone, somewhere most likely has it in stock and is desperate to pick it, pack it, post it and have it delivered straight to you. Many will not charge for shipping whilst an ever increasing number of companies will look to deliver to you on the next business day.

Now that’s working.

What can you buy? How about what can’t you buy?

Your daily newspaper?  A Friday night curry? A bottle of wine? Some organic yoghurt? A tank?  Something for the weekend?  (just think, you’ll never need to go to the Chemists and buy toothpaste you don’t need again).

I could go on. But you get the general drift. If it exists and it’s for sale, you can probably buy it online.

Everyone has heard of Amazon.  In the UK alone, its estimated that they offer around 132 million products on their website here.

That’s 2.0625 items for every man, woman and child in the country.

Ranging from the obvious-books, CD’s, DVD’s and clothing to the not so obvious-Unicorn meat anyone?

The world really is your online oyster.

And yes, you can buy oysters online as well.

We’ve already discussed the basic safety precautions you need to take when you are shopping online, those fundamental points to remember to ensure, as much as possible, that both you, the site and, most importantly of all, your money, is secure and the site is a reputable one.

One thing that helps you with regard to that is the fact the site will ask you for a password.

Seems a simple enough request doesn’t it? But you’d be surprised at how many people fall down here after having done all everything else done properly.

You could probably fill a small football stadium with the number of online shoppers who have either password or 123456 as their online passwords for example.

Not to mention qwerty, dragon and monkey, all of whom were cited as being popular password choices as well.

So here’s a tip if you’re thinking of using one of them, or similar, because you think it’s either (a) simple to remember or (b), no-one else will have it.

Let me tell you here and now that, (a) yes it is simple to remember-and that’s the problem and (b), yes, just about everyone else like you will have it.

You don’t share your front door key with thousands of total strangers so why would you share your internet password with them as well?

Use your imagination. Amazon have, they sell Unicorn meat for goodness sake. By the crateload. Share their initiative so you can be safe and secure when you visit their site to buy some.

Don’t use anything to do with your name or your date of birth.

If you are able to combine a mixture of letters and numbers great. Let’s say, for example, you had  great holiday in Bali in 2009.

So how about Ba2009li? Or, better still, Il9002ab?

See where I’m coming from? It’s easy for you to remember-and personal. But not so much for a potential hacker.

So don’t make it easy for them to profit out of any potential carelessness on your part and do the basics well.

Starting with that all important password.

Right, so, now you’ve either created your first one else changed the one you had that said 123456 to something a little more elaborate, why not test it out and buy yourself something?

You’ve earnt it.