Safely Shopping Online
As within any financial transaction, there are always security issues to bear in mind when shopping online, but the risks can be kept to a minimum with some good old fashioned common sense.
Even if you are an experienced online shopper it’s worth reminding yourself from time to time of security issues.
It is not dissimilar to the pre-flight safety demonstration on board a ‘plane, you’ve probably heard it dozens of times before, but it is always done for a good reason.
Some basic “don’t forgets are”, don’t put your credit card details on an unsecured website, post them on social media, and don’t deliver those details by email.
Don’t give the online outlet information that isn’t relevant to the transaction for instance, if there is no need for them to know your date of birth, then don’t tell them.
Don’t forget or overlook to log out of the account after the transaction.
Try not to send your details whilst using public Wi-Fi, as this isn’t considered totally safe, it is better to use data roaming for just for the transaction.
A few swift glances can help verify the security of the site you want to buy from, it should be marked https:// in the browser bar and should also carry the image of a padlock. Some sites show an icon that verifies it with an antivirus provider.
A credit card is always preferable to a debit card, if not for personnel financial reasons, then for security reasons, because should anything go wrong with the transaction, the monies have not physically left your bank account, allowing reaction time. Also, should there be a question of honesty along the line of transaction, you may well have recourse to your credit card provider.
These are simple common sense steps which you should undertake almost automatically as apart of online shopping. The ranges of goods, services and their prices is almost limitless, so always compare prices, if you can, before you buy, but remember, if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is, and steer clear!
Make sure the retailer has a returns and refund system in place, and preferably telephone contact details.
Make sure that you log out of sites that you have logged into or registered details. Simply closing your browser isn’t enough to ensure privacy.
Check your credit card and bank statements carefully after online shopping to make sure the correct amounts have been debited and that nothing untoward has taken place as a result of the transaction.