Help Me Hank: Tips to avoid hackers when doing holiday shopping online

4 ways to protect your finances online

DETROIT – Online shopping is convenient, especially during the business holiday season, but one wrong move could cripple you financially.

Hackers are looking to steal personal information and break into systems.

Here are tips to protect yourself while shopping online:

1. Freeze your credit

Freezing your credit stops people from gaining access to your credit report without your consent.

This is free to do. Contact each credit bureau to freeze your credit.

2. Make sure websites are secure and verified

Don't make purchases on or enter your personal information into websites that aren't secure and verified. When shopping on Amazon, don't follow pop-up ads to other websites.

3. Use a credit card instead of a debit card

Credit cards offer more protection when contesting a charge. Additionally, if a hacker gets hold of your information, they won't be stealing money directly from your checking account.

4. Have an email for online purchases

Have an email address you only use for making online purchases.

Don't use your personal or work email account when shopping online.

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