Tips & Tricks from the Couch Pandas

There are some top tips you can follow to make your online shopping experience safer & more rewarding, below are our top tips:

1. Install a browser just for shopping

If you don’t want your online shopping life to interfere with the rest of your online life then you can always install a different browser for all your shopping needs. If you use Chrome, then consider Canary (which is a testing version of Chrome) that can be used with separate profiles / cookies etc. but still works like Chrome. Otherwise Safari is a safe browser and tested for most of the large commercial e-commerce sites. Having both is a good idea.

2. Create an email address just for shopping

You can set up a new email account with Gmail or Hotmail that can forward to one of your existing accounts without ever having to reveal your personal email account.

3. Install an ad-blocker

Install an ad-blocker to make sure you only see ads on the sites that you really like.

4. Freight-forwarding

In some cases, you might not be able to deliver to your current address, or you would not like to reveal your home address to many sites. This is where you can use ‘freight-forwarding’ services that can send received e-commerce packages to your home address.

5. Don’t use an old, outdated computer

If you are using something that has not been updated in more than a year then there is a real risk strange things can be done to your browser. Please keep your software legal & updated! Head over to the Technology section where you can get the latest hardware you need!

6. Use a separate card for online transactions

Order a debit-card with fixed limits for your online purchases. If your card details are ever leaked, you can easily cancel without affecting your real-life charges, and by setting limits, you can control the amount that can be bought before being ‘maxed’! Otherwise, if you are spending large amounts, get a card that rewards you for spending with air-miles. The US has some of the best cards (Chase), but based on your airline of choice you can normally find a card that gives you rewards for flights you can actually use.