1. Should you be shopping online, never give out your Social Security number. There is absolutely no website that needs this number for you to buy something. If you are being asked for your Social Security number during checkout, you are probably on a scam website. Leave this site and locate one that includes a better reputation.
2. If a company has a newsletter, sign up. Often, companies will give sneak peeks, promotions and coupon codes to people on the mailing list. However, be careful. You don't want to sign up for every company's newsletter or you'll soon be buried under endless emails. Only join a company's newsletter should you really like their goods and would use a promotion code.
3. Read customer testimonials before you buy anything. People are more than happy to complain about bad service online, so look for sites and testimonials which can be terrible so that you know what you're getting into. You ought to take bad reviews using a grain of salt, but if you see many, you know there is a problem.
4. Sign-up for any id theft protection your credit card company offers, particularly if you shop online often. No matter how safe you are or how diligently you believe it is possible to protect your data, it's never one hundred percent guaranteed. Take full advantage of automatic ID protection and know you will have back-up, should the worst occur.
5. If a website is not secure, do not make a purchase. Simply search for at the website address when you are shopping. If you notice an "https" as opposed to an "http," you can feel confident enough to insert your credit card information. However, if there is no "s" in the address, start working on a different site to be on the safe side.