As the world is becoming more & more digital, consumers are inclining towards online shopping. There are several benefits associated with online shopping like better deals, free home delivery, Flexi payment method etc. Online shopping indeed carries advantages but there are certain tips which must be followed to shop safely on the web.
Read the following tips for safe online shopping:
Before shopping online one should verify the site properly. It is advisable to shop only from certified sites so that personal or private data can’t be stolen. It is also better to avoid sites that don’t list any of their contact numbers because those sites can be fake or phishing sites. Google displays a warning message if it detects a user is about to visit a phishing site.
Keep a track of your credit card statements, so that you can spot any fraudulent transactions. Instead of waiting for the monthly statements, make it a habit to check your transactions on a weekly basis.
Prefer using a credit card instead of a debit card to make an online payment. Credit card fraud issues can be disputed with the bank. So if there is a misuse, you can raise a dispute. Also never store credit card information on shopping sites.
Make sure to update your computer security software as it prevents your PC from viruses, worms, and spyware. Software updates are released by every antivirus company, which are must have to keep your antivirus strong enough to face any kind of cyber threats. A PC which has an outdated antivirus software is more prone to viruses.
Shopping through public computers puts you at a higher risk of becoming a victim of internet scams and hacking. However, if you do not have a PC at your home then check if the public computer has an antivirus software installed.
A website that does not have an SSL certificate is a clear indication of danger. Look for the presence of ‘s’ in ‘https’ mentioned at the starting of the website URL. Additionally, look for the lock icon displayed in the status bar on your browser. The presence of ‘s’ and lock signify that the website is safe for usage.
These days the trend of big sales like Cyber Monday, Black Friday is getting popular. However, attackers do not fail to take advantage of such occasions and trap customers by offering rock-bottom prices. Anything that seems too good to be true should be avoided.
Many online buyers do not consider their shopping accounts as important as their banking accounts. This mindset needs to be changed. Saving your online shopping credentials on public devices and using passwords as easy as ABC@123 can put you in a problem.
Undoubtedly, it is hard to ignore emails that offer huge discounts and deals, but you never know that such an email could infect your computer with malware or lead to leakage of your credit card details. So the thumb rule is to never click on unknown links, attachments, files, etc.
Usually, shopping websites do not require much information from customers. So giving your name, address, and contact number is fine, but you shall never share your credit card details, social security details, and other such sensitive information. In case they ask you for the same, it is better to ask for some alternative ways or move another website.
In case you are cheated by a business as you do not receive your products, or they are simply not interested to help you, it is important to notify your credit card company as they might remove the charge from your statement. Also, you can report to local cyber crime authorities so that they can take appropriate action against such fake websites.
Following the above security tips, you can remain one step ahead of cyber crooks and safeguard your financial data. Know more about shopping scams by reading this post – Beware of these 4 Holiday Season Scams!
Note- This blog post has been republished with the latest facts and statistics.