How to protect yourself against fraud when buying at online stores?
Internet shopping is fun and easy. However, in order to avoid problems associated with the theft of personal data, it is important to look for the following simple recommendations. No matter whether you are going to buy some inexpensive toaster or a top-notch juicer for your home keep in mind the following tips – do not click on links in emails, do not buy using a public Wi-Fi, update your software and change passwords periodically – and then everything will be fine.
1. Do not click on links in e-mails.
Fishing is a common method of identity theft. Hackers’ letters look like ordinary advertising mail asking you to browse ads online, but links to the goods will take you to fake websites. Having made an order on such a website, the unsuspecting buyer will not get their purchase and what is more, will give the hackers his or her personal data. Such data may include: credit card numbers, bank accounts and so forth. In order to avoid unpleasant situations, it is better to type the address of the store manually and only then you need to find the desired item.
2. Check the address of the store in the browse’s address line. Online stores that take care of security, do not use open protocols. Make sure that the address of the page with the item begins with the letters https (but not with http). Otherwise, it is best to abstain from the purchase.
3. Do not make purchases while using open Wi-Fi networks.
It is very convenient to use free Wi-Fi somewhere at a café while waiting for your order to buy a last minute gift to your girlfriend, for instance. The problem with public Wi-Fi is that anyone who is connected to such a network can get the information circulating on the web, including sensitive data. Hackers love password-less access.
4. Keep your computer software up-to-date.
Some users spend considerable sums on special protection programs. But there is a simpler and more effective way to improve your security. All you need to do is update the software as soon as a new version is released, and never put off the update. Special attention should be paid to the browser. It is like a door to the network, which must be kept constantly locked.
5. While doing online shopping, do not use the same bank card. It is best to get a separate virtual card for online shopping and keep it empty. Even if the card details become known to fraudsters, they will make no use it.
6. You should periodically change the registration data on websites.
As evidence of recent events shows, everyone can be robbed of their password, even the almighty Google. By changing your password, you can negate all the efforts of fraudsters. When choosing a password, keep in mind that simple combinations like 12345 are very easy to crack. In addition, never use the same character set on different sites because if a hacker cracks your password on one website, they might use this password to access your information on other websites.
To ensure your information is safe, shop only on reliable, secure sites. If you are not ready to go for online shopping, you can browse the websites featuring ads online to select home appliances, furniture or anything else you need and then contact the seller to arrange the offline purchase.