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Daily Q&A: What are your tips for safe online shopping?

I'm looking to do more shopping online over the holidays. Do you have some tips for safe online shopping?

Consumers do need to be careful about how and where they make purchases over the Internet. Shopping online is expected to increase during the holidays, so offerings from legitimate as well as fraudulent retailers will likely show a corresponding increase.

The American Bar Association makes a variety of safe online shopping tips available. The major recommendations from the ABA are to ensure you use a secure connection and purchase with a credit card.

Other suggestions from the ABA include:

• Print the terms. You should print out and date a copy of terms, conditions, warranties, item description, company information, even confirming e-mails, and save them with your records of your purchase.

• Find and read the privacy policy. Read the privacy policy carefully to find out what information the seller is gathering from you, how the information will be used, and how you can stop the process. If a site does not have a privacy policy posted, you may not want to do business with it. If it does have a privacy policy, there will probably be a link to it from the seller's home page, or it could be included with the Legal Terms.

Here is a link to these and other online shopping tips by the ABA: http://www.safeshopping.org/tips.shtml.

Question for the Consumer's Edge? Send it to ipenn@sptimes.com or twitter.com/consumers_edge. Questions are answered only in this daily feature.

Daily Q&A: What are your tips for safe online shopping? 11/17/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 11:07am]
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