Safety tips before you shop online at a crappie store

Safety is a huge issue when you are buying anything online. The fact that just about anyone can use tools to make the website look realistic is what you have to worry about. Sadly, you just don’t know if the people on the other end of it are a legitimate e-commerce business or scammers trying to take your money and your personal information.
You may be thinking you can just go online and buy crappie fishing items from a retailer and have them sent to you. In many situations, that is all you need to do. A few clicks, your payment information, and before you know it those items will arrive at your home. Yet after you give that personal information out, you really have no way of knowing who has it.

They could be processing your order just like they said they would. The other option though is that they could be online setting up new accounts, getting into your bank accounts, and charging up debts on your credit card. It happens every single day as identify theft is a growing epidemic in our society.

To help you avoid such problems, make sure you have fraud protection on your credit or debit card. It is a good idea to sign up for email or text alerts. Then every time your credit or debit card is used, they will send you a message to let you know. This will help you to identify any potential fraud right away.

I have a prepaid debit card that I use for online purchases. You can get them at any retailer checkout these days and use them to buy crappie fishing items online. I just put a small amount of money on it at a time. Then that is all I can use for the purchase. My name and my personal financial information aren’t linked to that card. Should there be a scammer, they may be able to take me for $50 or something but not much.

Before you buy crappie fishing items online, find out what you can about the business. Check out there about us page to find out how long they have been in business and where they are located. Call the phone number to make sure it is a business number. Look up the address they give on Google maps to make sure it really exists.

Read reviews online too about that particular business from other consumers. If they have lots of complaints then don’t buy anything from that business. If they have lots of complaints with the BBB then you want to avoid them as well. If you can’t find any information about them, you should see that as a red flag. They may change their business name often to stay under the radar.

Something that I am always cautious about is if a business selling fishing items is way cheaper than the competitors. Sometimes a business will do that to get you enticed to buy from them. Yet they don’t really have such items available to send out to you. They just want your money and your credit card information.

We live in a world where technology is king, and that means e-commerce is everywhere you look. I agree that being able to buy crappie fishing items online is a great value and convenience. You can get what you want even if they don’t have it at the local bait shop. Just use caution and make sure you don’t get taken advantage of.

If you do feel that you have been scammed, report it right away. Too often people don’t do this because they are embarrassed. Yet that reporting is what can ensure that those scammers don’t get a chance to continue doing that to other consumers.

Dan Eggertsen is a fellow crappie fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on crappie fishing since 2004.

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