Is Shopping Online Safe?

Is Shopping Online Safe?

March 12, 2015

Whether you are handing your credit card to the 19 year old who takes it to the back of the restaurant to run it or entering the information online, anytime you use a credit card you are taking a risk. The important thing to know is how to minimize that risk.

When shopping online, any website asking for sensitive information is required to have an SSL certificate. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. Translation: It encrypts the information between your computer and the “store” computer before the information is transmitted.

How do you know if the site store has an SSL certificate? Well, for starters, type the name of the store in the google search bar. Most URLs (website addresses) begin with http. If an address is secure, it will start with https (s=secure.)

When using Chrome, you will see a green lock in the URL (address bar) as another assurance that the site address is secure.

A green lock and a green site name mean it has an Extended Validation Certificate, and you can be more certain that they are who they say they are.

If you are feeling particularly geeky, you can click on the green lock and look at the connection information.

Information such as the connection uses TLS 1.2 means a higher security.

Also it should be using not less than 256 bit encryption.

Recently I was shopping online. Here is the URL (website address) when I began shopping.

It doesn’t show a secure location, but it was also not asking me sensitive information.

However, as soon as I clicked on the button to checkout, and was asked for sensitive information, it went to this screen.

Green Lock and Name=secure. Purchase complete. Credit card threat minimized.