1. CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD before and after the holiday season.
2. Guard your information: don`t give out personal information when it is not necessary.
a. Example: you shouldn`t have to give your SS# or mother`s maiden name when using a CC or PayPal to make a purchase.
3. Make sure that you are using HTTPS when making a purchase: these are 'secure sites' that encrypt your information end-to-end. They can be indicated by a lock symbol in your browser window, such as:
4. Pay with a credit card to minimize fraud risk.
a. Unlike paying with a debit card, you can contest charges without losing any cash.
b. Many card companies offer 'virtual account numbers' which allow you to create a one-time use card with date and amount limits.
5. Stop Junk Mail before it happens:
a. Contribute anonymously to charities.
b. Generally, don`t 'Unsubscribe' to an unsolicited marketing email.
c. Read privacy policies and opt out when possible.