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Ten signs of trust

By Tony Neate on 19 Jul, 2010

This is a guest blog post from VeriSign UK, a Get Safe Online sponsor.

iStock_000009164514Small When you are looking at a website, here are ten signs that can help you decide whether a company is worth doing business with, or not.

  1. A well-designed site. If companies don’t take the time to design a website that is easy to use, accessible for people with disabilities, simple to navigate and quick to load, then the chances are they won’t take the time to provide good services or proper privacy.
  2. Useful information. Look for a company that provides advice, recommendations and help. In particular, look for information about security – it shows they’re thinking about it.
  3. A good reputation. A well-known brand can be a reassurance but a small firm with a good reputation can also be trustworthy. Look for customer endorsements and third party reviews online.
  4. Real-world contact details. Look for a phone number, email contact and real-world address. If you feel nervous, call them up and see who answers and how helpful they are.
  5. SSL Encryption. Every site should use SSL encryption to protect your confidential information when you enter it or when you checkout during a purchase.
  6. Extended Validation SSL certificates. This gives you extra reassurance that the site is genuine and that the company behind it really exists.
  7. SSL Certificate matches company details. Click on the golden padlock and crosscheck the company details there with the details on the site. Sometimes, you have to look in the site’s terms and conditions to find the company’s trading name and registered address.
  8. Trust marks. Trusted third party signs, such as the VeriSign Secured Seal let you check that a site is safe. Click on the symbol to confirm the ownership of the site.
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  9. Clear policies. Ecommerce sites should offer clear, non-nonsense returns and postage policies. If you don’t understand the deal you’re getting, don’t do it.
  10. Support for Get Safe Online. Well, not everybody supports Get Safe Online, but it’s a good sign if they do!