1. Never give out your Social Security number to an online merchant. This number is not required for placing orders online. Giving an online store your Social Security number can help them use your personal and private information to steal your identity. To prevent that, if you carry on an online store site and find out that as a requirement, usually do not buy anything from them and shop elsewhere.
2. Sign-up for any id theft protection your credit card company offers, especially if you shop online often. No matter how safe you are or how diligently you believe you can protect your details, 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.
3. Always save copies of your orders and receipts from online purchases. Many stores will redirect one to a page after you've submitted a purchase detailing exactly what was bought, customer information, the prices, etc. You should either print a copy of this or save a duplicate to your computer in case any issues arise before the end of the return period. Make sure to save any emails regarding your items' status or correspondence with the company regarding your orders, too.
4. Sign up for your preferred online stores' newsletters. Many times online stores will be sending out daily, weekly or monthly newsletters with special sales, discounts and deals. If you like to spend less, you could possibly score some good deals on items you were going to purchase anyway.
5. While shopping online, be sure the site you are on starts with "https". The "S" implies that the site is secure, which entails that you can safely enter your personal information without having to be worried about identity theft. When a site lacks the "S" in it, you may want to avoid using it.