Monday, December 19, 2016

5 Online Shopping Tips for the Holiday Season

tips for holiday shopping
More and more people are shopping online for their holiday purchases.For the most part, shopping online is very secure and you don’t have to feel too concerned. However, if you’re not careful, there is a chance of having your account compromised.

Here are 5 helpful tips to keep you safe as you shop from the comfort of your own home.

1. Use a credit card for online purchases. Try and use a credit card, rather than a debit card. When money is spent on a debit card it's gone immediately, and it can be very hard to get it back. If you select credit, and there is a problem you can dispute the charges.

2. Choose trusted retailers. Shop with companies you know and trust. Check for background information if you plan to buy from a new or unfamiliar company. Big retailers are most likely to have strong security. Shop with the same retailers if you can. This means fewer retailers have your information on file. It also means that you're giving your information to a company you know and trust, and therefore can keep track of it easier.

3.  Online presence. If you don't need an account with a retailer any more, delete it. Storing information all over the Internet is a recipe for disaster, particularly if you can't remember who has what information for which purposes.

4. Check your accounts frequently. If a hack occurs, best to catch it quickly so check your accounts daily if you're doing a lot of online shopping for the holidays. A quick Google search for the name of the retailer followed by "hack" will show if any recent attacks have hit the press.

5. Use strong passwords. Most retailers will prompt you to make a secure password, but it's good practice to use a strong password on websites that don't request it. It's easy to come up with a secure password: longer is better (use at least eight characters), don't use words, use capitals, numbers and punctuation marks.

Following these tips will help keep you safe during online shopping. At Mid Century Fiber, we offer our customers the fastest and safest Internet experience. Do you have questions about the security of your Internet? Visit our website to learn more about how we can help you.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Choosing the Right Internet Plan for Your Needs

Choosing the Right Internet Plan for Your NeedsSelecting the appropriate internet plan for you family is a balance between what your budget allows and how much speed and bandwidth you need. These factors will vary depending not only on your budget, but on how you plan to use your internet connection. It’s important to have the right internet plan so that you and your family get the most enjoyment and ease out of your online experience.

     Determine how you use the internet. If you just use it for occasional web surfing and email, you most likely can get away with having a lower speed. For gamers and those who download a lot of music and videos, stream videos, or use internet TV services such as Netflix, a higher speed makes a big difference in the ease of downloading and streaming, and minimizing buffering problems.
     Determine how many devices will be using it. Shared internet, especially when multiple devices will be using it simultaneously, requires more speed and bandwidth. Devices include laptops, gaming systems, smartphones, tablets, and PCs. Overburdening a slow internet connection with multiple devices results in frustration, as it slows web traffic, download speed, and results in buffering. You can estimate the speed you will need with this calculation system.
     Go with a plan that meets your needs and then goes at least a bit beyond. It’s better to err on the side of caution, and go with a plan that is slightly higher than your needs. Technology is changing all the time, and our need for it also changes. We use the internet more and more, whether it be for school, work, personal finance, shopping, entertainment, telecommunication, social networking, and more. Choose a plan that meets your needs, but also allow for some wiggle room in usage to ensure a smoother online experience. 
     Talk to your service provider. Internet speed and usage calculations don’t take into account any other services you use that may offset your need for speed, such as satellite or cable TV. Fiber, DSL, and cable internet offer different speeds, but the availability of internet types and speeds vary by area.

Mid Century Communications is located in Fairview, Illinois. We are a business and residential telephone, internet, and TV service provider offering a variety of plans to suit your needs. Please visit our site for more information, or call our Fairview office at (309) 778-8611!