Symptoms of a Spyware or Adware Infected Computer
Endless pop-up browser windows
redirected to unwanted web sites
unexpected toolbars in your web browser
unexpected or new icons task tray
browser's home page suddenly changes
certain keys fail to work in your browser (e.g. the tab key)
random Windows error messages appear
your computer suddenly seems very slow when opening programs or processing tasks
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Shop Online Safely
Shop Online SafelyThe Internet is an exciting tool
that puts vast information at your fingertips. With a click
of a mouse, it lets you buy an airline ticket, book a hotel,
send flowers to a friend, or purchase your favorite stock.
Good deals, convenience, and choice abound on the Internet.
But before you use all the Internet has to offer, be “cyber“
smart to make the most of your online experience.
Security on the Internet
Shopping online offers lots of benefits that you won’t find
shopping in a store or by mail. The Internet is always open –
seven days a week, 24 hours a day – and bargains can be numerous
online. Shopping on the Internet is no less safe than shopping
in a store or by mail. Keep the following tips in mind to help
ensure that your online shopping experience is a safe one.
- Use a secure browser. This is the software you use to
navigate the Internet. Your browser should comply with
industry security standards, such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL).
These standards scramble the purchase information you send
over the Internet, helping to secure your transaction. Most
computers come with a browser installed. You also can download
some browsers for free over the Internet.
- Shop with companies you know. Anyone can set up shop
online under almost any name. If you’re not familiar with a
merchant, ask for a paper catalog or brochure to get a better
idea of their merchandise and services. Also, determine the
company’s refund and return policies before you place your
order. These should be posted on the company’s Web site.
- Keep your password(s) private. Be creative when you
establish a password, and never give it to anyone. Avoid using
a telephone number, birth date or a portion of your Social
Security number. Instead, use a combination of numbers,
letters and symbols.
- Pay by credit or charge card. If you pay by credit or
charge card online, your transaction will be protected by the
Fair Credit Billing Act. Under this law, you have the right to
dispute charges under certain circumstances and temporarily
withhold payment while the creditor is investigating them. In
the event of unauthorized use of your credit or charge card,
you generally would be held liable only for the first $50 in
charges. Some companies offer an online shopping guarantee
that ensures you will not be held responsible for any
unauthorized charges made online, and some cards may provide
additional warranty, return and/or purchase protection
- Keep a record. Be sure to print a copy of your purchase
order and confirmation number for your records. Also, you
should know that the Mail and Telephone Order Merchandise Rule
covers online orders. This means that unless the company
states otherwise, your merchandise must be delivered within 30
days; and if there are delays, the company must notify you.
- Pay your bills online. Some companies let you pay bills
and check your account status online. Before you sign up for
any service, evaluate how the company secures your financial
and personal information. Many companies explain their
security procedures on their Web site. If you don’t see a
security description, call or email the company and ask.
EASY AS ABC
When exploring online, think ABC to remember the
privacy and security questions you should ask about a
About me. What information does the company collect
about me and is it secure?
Benefits. How does the company use that information
and what is the benefit to me?
Choices. What choices do I have about the company’s
use of information about me? Can I opt-out of having
information used for other purposes, and how?
Privacy on the Internet
Technology now provides companies with the ability to collect
information about you and potentially give or sell that
information to others. While the Internet can serve as a
tremendous resource for information, products, and services, you
should be sure to safeguard your privacy online by following
- Keep personal information private. Don’t disclose personal
information – such as your address, telephone number, Social
Security number, or email address – unless you know who is
collecting the information, why they are collecting it, and
how they will use it. If you have children, teach them to
check with you before giving out personal – or family –
their privacy policies on their Web site. This policy should
disclose what information is being collected on the Web site
and how that information is being used. Before you provide a
If you can’t find a policy, send an email or written message
to the Web site to ask about its policy and request that it be
posted on the site.
- Make choices. Many companies give you a choice on their
Web site as to whether and how your personal information is
used. These companies allow you to decline – or “opt-out” of –
having personal information, such as your email address, used
for marketing purposes or shared with other companies. Look
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