As holiday shopping season begins, Queen Creek librarian Holly Paxson wants people who shop online to be safe.
Paxson will host a free class on online consumer safety, protecting identity and safe online shopping techniques Wednesday.
“We’re going to be exploring things the consumer can look for in order to make the experience safer for them,” Paxson said. “Some people are very fearful about shopping online. I’ve been an online consumer for about eight years and never had a problem. I’m basically passing along the information so people can do this — and be smart about it.”
Maricopa County Library District spokeswoman Audrey Brownell said the class will offer tips for online shoppers or those interested in getting started with shopping on the Internet. There is limited room remaining for the class.
The class is open to active Maricopa County Library District card holders with basic computer skills, Brownell said. Those interested must register in advance of the class at www.mcldaz.org or by calling (602) 652-3000.
“We talk about protecting your privacy in using the Internet as part of my training as a librarian,” Paxson said. “I adopted a lot of those techniques when I went on to do shopping.”
The class will include tips to identify safe Web sites that are encrypted for shopping, as well as how to shop on online auction sites such as eBay.
With only six computers at the library, Paxson said if more people register, she would be happy to schedule another session.
“I hope to make folks a little less nervous about shopping online because it’s terribly convenient — especially for folks out in Queen Creek where our malls aren’t developed quite yet,” Paxson said.
Online shopping tips
• Never put a credit card number in an e-mail to someone
• When chatting online, be guarded if you don’t know to whom you’re talking
• Stick with big reputable, known online retailers
• Only shop with a credit card on encrypted sites
• Make sure there are numerous contact points on the Web site being used other than an e-mail address
Source: Holly Paxson, Queen Creek librarian