Attorney General Ashley Moody today issued a Consumer Alert with online shopping safety tips for Cyber Monday and the remainder of the holiday shopping season. Cyber Monday is one of the busiest online shopping days of the year, with many Floridians aiming to get the best deals on popular products. According to the National Retail Federation, 60% of consumers say they plan to purchase holiday items online this year. Attorney General Moody is encouraging Floridians to take steps to prevent identity theft and other online shopping pitfalls on Cyber Monday and throughout the holiday shopping season.
“Online sales have soared this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and consumers will continue to utilize the convenience of online shopping for Cyber Monday and the remainder of the holiday shopping season. However, with that convenience comes risks. Taking steps to protect yourself online this holiday season will help you avoid scams, and it will help us build a stronger, safer Florida,” said Moody.
Tips for a safer online shopping experience this holiday season include:
- Make sure your web browser is secure. Be sure to identify a lock symbol in the address bar;
- Shop on well-established, well-known websites;
- Consider using credit cards instead of debit cards if possible, as credit cards usually offer better protection and provide more opportunity to challenge purchases before you pay your credit card bill;
- Know that some debit and credit card providers offer one-time card numbers to be used for online transactions for further protection. Information on whether a particular card company offers this service is located on the company’s website;
- Create strong passwords for online accounts using a mixture of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters; and
- Never click on an ad, coupon or email solicitation from an unknown sender—if the deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Earlier this month, Attorney General Moody released Scams at a Glance: ‘Tis the Season, a brochure full of tips consumers should consider to protect their financial and personal information this holiday season. To view the addition to the Scams at a Glance program, click here.
Attorney General Moody recently released the 2020 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide, containing further tips for safe online shopping, charity-related scams, item recalls and more. To access the guide, click here.
The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division offers resources for consumers through the Attorney General’s Office’s website regarding various consumer protection topics. For more tips on online safety from the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division, click here.