Are you shopping?
In the last week I have run into two people who didn’t know about secure web sites. With holiday shopping upon us I thought I should spread the word – in case there are other folks in doubt. Putting your credit card information into a web site is generally safe if the site is secure. You can tell if a site is secure by checking the address. If it has changed from http://… to https:// then it is safe. You should also check for security indicator on your browser. With Explorer this usually means a closed padlock at the bottom right of the screen. With Netscape, you will see a whole key at the bottom left of the screen (otherwise the key is broken). For more advice check out the Sympatico’s FAQ page.
(Note: Sending credit card information through email is NOT safe. Also a secure site protects your information in transmission – it does not protect it from misuse on the other side. So, just as using a credit card in a restaurant is only as safe as the waiter is trustworthy – sending it online is only as safe as the end recipient is trustworthy.)
Are you selling?
I write a newsletter for BizPathways, a site that helps Minnesota entrepreneurs find business development resources. Later this week I am going to invite registered BizPathways users to send me info on their businesses if they provide a service or product that would make a good holiday gift. I will create a “buy Minnesotan for the holiday” web site that features those resources. So, if you are an entrepreneur that sells for holidays then, please join BizPathways and then I can add you to the buy Minnesota list. (Registration for the BizPathways site is free.)