SOURCE: BitDefender


November 23, 2009 10:08 ET

BitDefender Offers Tips for Safe Online Holiday Shopping

What Every Savvy Shopper in Pursuit of Online Deals Should Know Before Entering a Credit Card Number

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA--(Marketwire - November 23, 2009) - It's that time of year again. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, the holidays are coming up, and it's time to shop! BitDefender, an award-winning provider of innovative anti-malware security solutions, offers up some simple tips to help consumers protect themselves from online scammers this holiday season.

"Taking advantage of the many benefits of online shopping like competitive pricing, great selection, or even freebies like zero shipping fees and free gift wrapping, doesn't have to cost consumers more than they've bargained for," said Catalin Cosoi, BitDefender's senior antispam researcher. "By being aware of a few key issues, consumers can shop safely with the knowledge they need to protect their personal information and their PC."

The following tips include suggestions to consider before shopping online this holiday season and throughout the New Year:

Know where you're shopping and read the fine print. Not every Web site and online shop is a safe and reputable merchant! The truth is many thieves are quite skilled at crafting very convincing, legitimate-looking online shopping sites. Be very careful who you purchase from.

If the merchant wants more than your name and email address in order to cash in that coupon, beware. A common phishing tactic targeting online shoppers utilizes online promotions and sales to entice a consumer to enter personal information in order to receive coupons or other merchandise. While many reputable sites offer coupons or samples, they will never ask for excessive amounts of personal information to redeem them, most only require a name and email address.


--  Always shop from a secure PC with a good security suite installed.
--  Try to stick to the known and trusted sites.
--  Be wary of "great gift" or "special offer" emails from unknown
    addresses, it is likely fake and should be avoided.
--  Use credit cards instead of debit cards. Debit cards offer a lower
    liability in case you are the victim of fraud.
--  Check for security seals on all shopping sites.
--  Make sure that the connection to the website is an https. This doesn't
    guarantee safety, but in most cases these sites are safe.
--  Consider alternative ways of payment, such as cash upon delivery.

To listen to the Tips for Safe Online Holiday Shopping podcast featuring Catalin Cosoi, click here. And to stay up-to-date on the latest e-threats, product and business news, sign-up for BitDefender's RSS feeds.

About BitDefender®

BitDefender is the creator of one of the industry's fastest and most effective lines of internationally certified security software. Since its inception in 2001, BitDefender has continued to raise the bar and set new standards in proactive threat prevention, emerging as the industry's anti-malware innovator. Every day, BitDefender protects tens of millions of home and corporate users across the globe -- giving them the peace of mind of knowing that their digital experiences will be secure. BitDefender solutions are distributed by a global network of value-added distribution and reseller partners in more than 100 countries worldwide. More information about BitDefender and its products are available at the company's security solutions press room. Additionally, BitDefender's provides background and the latest updates on security threats helping users stay informed in the everyday battle against malware.