As Black Friday and Cyber Monday approach once again, consumers are scouring the internet for the biggest and best deals, the coupons are being cut out, and people are planning out which stores they are going to hit to get the most bang for their buck. However, consumers are being urged to take precautions in order to remain safe both online and in the stores. These days may be huge holidays for shoppers everywhere, but it is imperative people know how to stay safe during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Those planning to get up early on Black Fridays to hit the shops need to remember that there are shoplifters out there, and they know how to pinpoint people they think are easy targets. For maximum safety, it is suggested that no one should go alone, especially if they are planning on making expensive purchases, or filling up multiple shopping carts with tons of stuff. This way, there are at least two people to help carry everything from store to car, and get it into the car, before becoming a target for theft.
Savvy shoppers should make sure car keys are in hand before exiting the store so there is no lost time. There are sadly many shoplifters who wait in the parking lot, determined to spot a person fumbling with keys and bags. Also, even if shoppers are only going to one store, they should put all packages in the trunk. This reduces the risk of break-ins both in and out of parking lots and enhances safety during the season.
As everyone knows from the hacking of major stores and companies in the past couple of years, being protected digitally is an important way to stay safe this Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Shoppers need to be careful using their credit cards. Shoplifting lurkers are quick to get those credit card numbers written down while customers have their credit cards out. Buyers are urged to only bring out their credit cards at the moment it is time to pay, and immediately put them away afterward. This is one of the most important safety tips for Black Friday.
Consumers should also scan the area and make sure someone is not too close by, as this could be a golden opportunity for the thieves to get those account numbers. Also, when shopping online, consumers should be wary of those amazing deals that seem too good to be true, because they probably are. Buyers should only shop with trusted companies and websites, not that random jewelry store that pops up on Facebook that no one has ever heard of before, if safety is a priority.
All receipts should be saved, and online activity of all credit cards should be tracked for the duration of the holiday season. This way people can be on top of their finances and look out for any strange activity. There is nothing worse than a shopper getting a bill at the end of the month with thousands of dollars worth of charges they never made.
It is easy to get caught up in the chaos of holiday deals, and the hope of getting the perfect gifts for friends and family, but it is important to know how to stay safe during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. No Christmas package under the tree is worth someone’s safety being compromised. Consumers should remember these safety tips, and be alert shopping both in stores and online throughout the holiday shopping season.
By: Rebecca Savastio
Photo Credit: Creative Commons