There are several reasons to be watchful while making online payments and the historic rise in online frauds and cyber attacks is one of them. In this digital world where people often use their mobile devices or computers for online shopping or payments, cyber criminals target both retailers and consumers to steal the personal and financial data of internet users who often make payments online.
Given how modern consumers are increasingly relying on online payment methods, cyber attacks also appear to be increasing respectively. This is the reason; industry experts recommend customers stay vigilant when it comes to hitting the ‘Pay Now’ button.
Here are some of the things you should ensure while making payments online:
Opt for Two-Factor Authentication
When it comes to make a payment via a digital wallet or online payment method, it is advised to opt for a two-factor authentication method instead of using a password solely. 2FA method generates a unique OTP every time you want to make a payment using your digital wallet or the online payment method. The OTP is sent via SMS message or email. This helps you verify each payment you make to help you prevent fraudulent payments or transactions.
Avoid Buying from Unreliable Portals
If you want to keep yourself safe when buying stuff and making payments online, you should not make purchases from stores, or websites that are not trustworthy. One way to check the security of an online store or website is to find HTTPS in the URL instead of HTTP. This ensures that all the submitted information or data will be encrypted automatically to prevent third parties from accessing and using that data for malicious purposes. Checking other security certificates and compliance information is another good idea to determine the trustworthiness of the online shopping portal you are considering.
Use Credit Cards for Online Shopping
Savvy online shoppers always use credit cards for online purchases and transactions instead of debit cards. A direct link to your bank account makes a debit card risky for you as criminals can steal all your money from the bank if card details are compromised. But credit cards come with a credit limit and also offer purchase and payment protection features to save you from fraudulent activities and transactions. Make sure you have the best credit card that offers greater protection for online payments. Not only this, credit cards also help you save money while shopping by introducing offers like sign-up bonus, cashback, free reward points, and discounts, etc.
Avoid Public Network Connections for Online Shopping
Quick access to a free network is appealing, but such open networks are very easy to hack into. That’s why, it is always a good idea to avoid using public and unsecured network connections when buying online stuff. Hackers can easily gain access to your personal and financial details that they can use for malicious purposes. If it is necessary to connect your device with a nearby Wi-Fi connection, make sure you are using a VPN to make your connection secure and protected.
Log out from E-commerce Websites
It is tempting to leave your account logged in for easy retrieval as there is no need to put your credentials again and again. But if you are using a public device for some online purchases, you should log out from all your accounts and e-commerce websites to ensure no one can access and use your account. If someone asks for your account details to make a purchase, don’t provide them with your details and ask them to use your own device for placing an order.
Don’t Save your Information on Websites
Whether you want to make a monthly payment or about to purchase something, remember not to click the ‘Remember my Details’ button as some sites ask you to save your information for later transactions. Saving your details on a website or online store can save time and effort on your next transactions but can also put you at high risk of information theft. Never ever save your personal information and card details on a website or payment portal to leave no choice for cybercriminals. Always submit your details for each transaction and make sure to check for ‘HTTPS’ in the URL before submitting anything personal and financial.