1. Sign-up for any identity theft protection your credit card company offers, particularly if you shop online often. No matter how safe you are or how diligently you believe you are able to protect your information, 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.
2. If you are 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 may be on a scam website. Leave this site and discover one that includes a better reputation.
3. Read customer testimonials before you buy anything. People are delighted to complain about bad service online, so look for sites and testimonials which can be terrible so you are aware what you're getting into. You should take bad reviews with a grain of salt, but if you see many, you know there exists a problem.
4. If you are making a purchase online, ensure that you use credit cards to pay for the transaction. Bank card users are protected against fraud by federal law and they are only liable for $50 in these cases. Some card agencies will even go so far as to wave the $50 for you, meaning that you will not be out of pocket.
5. Be careful in regard to the online stores that you consider buying from. If the online store is poorly designed, packed with misspellings, and overall fishy, you should take your money elsewhere. These are signs that something might not be right about this store. It's better to be safe than sorry.