Staying Safe While Holiday Shopping Online

When it comes to making purchases with your debit card, it’s easy – swipe or insert your card, enter your PIN, approve transaction. However, making purchases online with your debit card has become more common, and popular e-commerce websites can save your credit/debit card information to make buying online even easier. However, debit card fraud has been on the rise in the United States, and even the most cautious consumers can be at risk if they aren’t careful.

This Christmas season, millions of consumers will shop online for their loved ones and community members – and when it comes to the biggest spending holiday of the year, it’s more important than ever to stay alert and diligent while you shop. And while debit card fraud still exists, there are ways you can protect yourself while making purchases when you shop online. Here are a few tips:

Stick to online retailers you trust.

Most consumers who shop online swear by big box retailers like Amazon, Wayfair, and websites for Walmart and Costco. One way to shop safely and smartly online is to stick to these multinational retailers who have name-brand value. Any other sites with unusual domain names, or addresses that end in anything other than “dot com” might be suspect as they are often run by individual people and not larger retail outlets.

Don’t save your card information online.

On certain browsers, such as Google Chrome, you may be asked to save your info when you’re entering your debit or credit card information while making a purchase. While this may be tempting and convenient for future purchases, you might run into issues if it’s an unsecured website. Sites like Amazon where you can save your card information on your account, rather than through your browser’s autofill settings, is a better option.

Stay on guard with your logins.

Whether you’re logging into your Polam banking app on your smartphone or using free WiFi in a public space, be careful where and how you log into anything that you consider sensitive. If you’re using free public WiFi, perhaps consider waiting to access your accounts until you’re on a more protected network.