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How to keep your online purchase safe during the holidays

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How to keep your online purchases safe this holiday season
Posted at 11:19 AM, Nov 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-23 11:19:42-05

Many of us have made the transition to online shopping either for one or two gifts, or everything. But how do we keep those online purchases safe?

Rob Ponto from Comcast shares how to avoid scams to ensure your purchases will arrive safely before the holidays.

Do you trust the website you are ordering from? 

With the ability to find virtually whatever you’re looking for in a few clicks at your computer, it’s common to visit online shops you’ve never been to before. Make sure the retailer is legitimate by reading reviews and having internet security backing that will flag malicious sites. Comcast's xFi Advanced Security blocked 6 billion cyber threats nationwide last year. The free service for Xfinity internet customers tracks suspicious site visits and helps prevent users from visiting sites that may contain malware, spyware, ransomware, or viruses that can infect devices and potentially expose your entire home network to hackers.

The package is on its way, but be careful.

There are a lot of scams that look like UPS, USPS or FedEx, encouraging you to enter a lot of personal information for updated shipping details and these emails can look legitimate. These are called phishing scams. Look closely at any email you receive about shipping and if there is any doubt, always reach out directly to the retailer. Typically, the delivery services allow you to opt in to receive text or email notifications.

Your package has arrived! How do you make sure it stays safe if you’re not home? 

Discrete door-mounted cameras, like the Ring doorbell or Xfinity Self Protection system, can be effective. Look for camera systems that offer 24/7 video recording and storage as well as the ability to view live video, take pictures and manually record clips. BoxLock is another cool gadget: It’s a safe that sits on your porch in which the delivery driver can unlock by scanning a code on the package you ordered. Similarly, providing special delivery instructions and having a safe place for delivery workers to leave your package is excellent for deterrence as many porch pirates typically cruise the neighborhood looking for the "low hanging fruit." 

Know your neighbors. 

If you live in a neighborhood with friendly neighbors, keep an eye out as packages are being delivered and coordinate with each other to pick up your boxes if you expect to be away for the day or out of town.