Dangerous products in Homestead and across Florida cause many injuries, fires, and even fatalities each year. Whether you are buying cosmetics, electronics, toys, or any other product online, make sure you consider safety first. Many websites offer specialty products and amazing discounts. While online shopping can be fun (and a bargain) not everything you buy online is safe.
Use these tips to stay safe when shopping virtually:
- Check the reputation of websites. Check reviews of online stores by running the URL through a search engine. Are there no reviews or are many reviews negative? Look out for websites that seem to have unrealistically positive reviews, many negative customer experiences, or too few reviews.
- Look for real-world contact information. If there is a problem with a product you purchase, how easy would it be to get help from a live person? Is there a street address and telephone number? Read the terms and conditions—does the company stand by what they sell? Be wary of businesses that offer only “final sales” and have little information. Also, keep in mind that you may be more protected with US-based businesses you can reach out to and which need to abide by US laws.
- Don’t use cash or debit when buying online. Buying by credit card offers you a layer of protection, since you can ask the credit card company to settle any dispute.
- Find out when the website was created. You can use an online service such as WHOIS to determine when a site was created and who registered it. This can help you determine how legitimate it may be.
- Look for secure websites that start with “https:” Only buy from websites that begin with the letters “https.” These sites may also have small closed lock icon beside the web address on your website. Secured websites put you at less risk of identity theft. In addition, you might want to read the terms and conditions of the website to make sure your personal information will not be shared with others.
- Don’t believe offers that seem too good to be true. If a product claims to do something no other legitimate product on the market can do or if a price seems too good to be true, you may not be getting the full story.
- For brand-name items, consider buying directly from the brand. Buying direct helps you get a fair price and you can be sure the product is not a counterfeit.
- Check products when you get them. Even if you only shop from legitimate websites, make sure to look over the product once you receive it. Has it been damaged in shipping? If it is an electronic item, are any cords or adapters worn or frayed? Are any covers cracked or dented? Does the product look unsafe or suspect in any way? Even if you have purchased what you feel is a legitimate product, do not use it and return it for a refund if you are not sure about its safety.
If you have been affected by an unsafe product in Homestead or anywhere in South Florida, contact Flaxman Law Group at 1-866-352-9626 (1-866-FLAXMAN) to arrange a free consultation with a Homestead products liability attorney. Your free consultation gives you a chance to ask questions and get more information about any potential case you may have if you have been harmed by an unsafe product.