I’ve made several posts here about being cautious when entering photography contest. Most are just “rights grabs” where you give up far too many rights to your photographs.
But there are good contests out there too, but you still need to be careful. The other day I found a good contest from Natures Best Photography. I checked it out and the entry fee was reasonable, they weren’t doing a rights grab and the prizes and exposure were great.
I put together my selection of photographs and went to the online form. I filled out everything, and went to pay with my credit card. I’ve trained myself over the years to always look at the address bar before using my credit card on a site to make sure the page is secure. What I’m looking for is that the page address begins with a https, not a http. The “s” means the page is secure and encrypted. If the page is intercepted by someone, they won’t be able to see my credit card information.
Unfortunately, when I looked at the address, it was only an http. Did I want to enter the contest so much that I was willing to risk having my credit card information stolen? Absolutely not.
Last year, one of my credit card numbers was stolen three separate times. Twice because the credit card company was hacked, the other time, who knows. The card company quickly found out my card was compromised, contacted me, deactivated the account and sent me a new card. Two of the three times this happened there were no problems, and I had a new card in a week. The last time there was some glitch in the system, and I couldn’t log into my account online for ten days. That was a real pain in the pa-toot.
With a heavy sigh I closed the page and didn’t enter the contest.
Keep an eye out for ALL the details when entering a photography contest so you don’t have a headache down the road.