How to Shop Safely Online This Holiday Season

Earlier today, Google revealed what Canadian shoppers are planning to buy this Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and now, it has shared four ways to shop safely online during the holidays, including how to identify legitimate sellers.


While you keep an eye out for good deals, new trends, and clever gift ideas online, be sure to follow these tips to protect your personal and payment information, and avoid scams and phishing attempts.

Step 1: Guard your card

Use Apple Pay or Google Wallet to pay for your purchases. When using these digital wallets, transactions are made using an alternate card number (a token), which is device-specific and is associated with a dynamic security code that changes with each transaction.

This protects your card information and prevents the chance of losing or having your card stolen.

Step 2: Look for the lock

To ensure you’re browsing sites safely while shopping and traveling this holiday season, especially using public or free WiFi, ensure there is a gray locked icon in the URL field indicating a secure connection.

Also make sure the sites you visit utilize HTTPS, which indicates your browser or app is securely connected to the website you’re visiting.

Step 3: Foil phishing with Gmail and Chrome

Gmail users are given advanced protection as it blocks over 100 million phishing attempts daily and prevents 99.9% of spam, malware, and dangerous links from ever reaching your inbox.

When it detects a suspicious email, it will flag it for you, and Google will automatically scan documents for viruses and make sure you’re not being targeted by a phishing campaign.

Step 4: Protect your passwords

Don’t fall into bad password hygiene this season. To make things easier, take a Security Checkup up before beginning your online shopping journey to make sure all your security settings and passwords are in good shape.

You can always take advantage of:

  • Google Password Manager to store your passwords, auto-populate them for sites, create strong passwords, ensure they’re not entered into malicious sites, and alert you when they’re compromised.
  • 2 Step Verification for a second form of verification to access your account beyond your password. So, if someone tries to access your account, they will have a much harder time because they’ll need your password and a second form of verification.

Don’t forget to see what Canadians are searching for ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday by clicking here.