Consumers are expected to hit the internet for many of their holiday shopping needs this year. Glen Loyd with Wisconsin Consumer Protection says you should be careful in how you pay for those purchases. He's urging consumers to use a credit card for any purchase they make online, since it offers the most protections.
Loyd says using a bank or ATM card can expose you to the risk of having a bank account cleared out, if information is stolen from a retailer.
Loyd says you should also make sure the site you're buying from is secure. He says a simple way to tell is to look at the web address. If the web address begins with "https" then the site should be safe for entering sensitive financial information, such as a credit card number.
Finding that "must have" item can also be a challenge this time of year. Loyd is encouraging shoppers to steer clear of online auction sites for finding those types of products. He says the agency has received numerous complaints of sellers claiming to have a hot item, but they end up just taking the money and never shipping a product.
Loyd says be cautious of any online deal can help you avoid getting ripped off.