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February 17, 2010

  • Get A Handle On Protection, Pt.4
      Security begins at home!


    Keep your data secure. Protecting your debit and credit card information starts at home. Make sure your computer has the latest security software and check to assure your operating system is completely up to date. Protect all passwords for all sites including cards, banks, online shopping, gaming, and email. Develop strong passwords and have different passwords for different credit card, bank accounts, and other sites. Don't use easy to guess passwords like your birthday, mother's maiden name, phone numbers, addresses, or children's names. Six at least six characters and intermix them with numbers, letters, upper case and lower case letters. Never share your passwords with anyone. Stay away from one click express shopping where web sites store your credit card and personal information. It may be the fastest way to hand over information to a thief.

    Lastly, be cautious when purchasing prescription drugs online. There are many internet pharmacies and a great deal of them are reputable and safe. However, there are some that cannot be trusted with your credit card information and still others that sell sub-standard products. Visa warns consumers to be cautious when ordering any pharmaceutical products online. The credit card giant reminds consumers that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the regulating power over the distribution of drugs which varies outside the U.S. boundaries. It is the responsibility of the cardholder to assure they are using their Visa card solely for legal transactions. To assure you are dealing with a reputable pharmacy visit the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy web site. The association manages a program called the Verified Internet Pharmacy Practices Sites Program (VIPPS) that certifies reputable online pharmacies.

    Most importantly, consumers must realize that the safety of their personal and credit card information begins at home. All the sophisticated software and electronic payment transaction security standards will mean very little if consumers do not a vested interest in safeguarding their information.

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