I am sure you ask the same questions as I do when I shop online. Is this site really safe? Are they really who they say they are? How do you know? I am here to tell you.
The first thing I want to cover is SSL encryption. SSL stands for secure sockets layer. It is what online retailers use to create a secure connection between your browser and the web server that processes your credit card information. You will be able to tell if the site is SSL secure by looking in the top left/right hand corner of your browser next to the address bar (where you type in the url/website name). The following screenshots will show you what each browser looks like when you are on a page encrypted with SSL.
Internet Explorer will either make the entire address bar green, and/or add a lock icon to the left or right of the browser address bar depending on the version you are using.
NOTE: Each browser varies but if you look inside the browser/address bar and/or to the sides of it, there will always be something indicating that you are on an SSL encrypted page
The only pages that need SSL are pages that contain sensitive information like your credit card. If you are entering your credit card information and you do not see the SSL certificate in the top of your browser it is recommended you do not place the order. You will see on DogLoverStore.com, every single page including our cart and checkout page is encrypted with SSL.
Age of the Website
Another thing to consider is how long the site been around. Sites that are out to scam you usually are only up for a couple months. By that point they will have been reported numerous times and then they shut down the site. A site that has been around for a year or more, is less likely to be scamming customers.
Privacy Policies, FAQ, and Contact Information
It is recommended to all businesses that sell online to be PCI compliant. In a nut shell, that means that all credit card data from a customer must be handled properly in the database to ensure the data is protected from hackers. Many websites are not PCI compliant. Please examine the following scenario:
- Customer places order on a website
- The credit card information is acessed, charged, and then stored in the database of the website
- A hacker comes along days, weeks, months, even years later and hacks the websites database.
- The hacker then steals all the data gaining access to YOUR credit card information
- The hacker then uses your credit card information to place orders.
This is a simple run down of what can happen when your credit card information is kept on the websites database. At dogloverstore we pay the extra money to have all credit card data securely processed on a PCI compliant server. This means that none of your credit card information is stored in our system. If our site gets hacked, none of your credit card information will be available to the hacker. For more detailed information on PCI compliance you can visit the following link: PCIComplianceguide.org