Essentials Tips for Making a Secure Payment Online

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Are you among the 70 percent of Americans who shop online? If yes, then you certainly pay for goods and services via the internet.

However, with an increase in cyber fraud, more and more consumers are starting to get worried about making online payments. In fact, in a recent survey, 37 percent of respondents said they abandoned an online purchase due to security concerns.

So, how safe are you when paying online?

While some things are beyond your control, there are steps you can take to make a secure payment online.

Keep reading for more insight!


Buy from Reputable Online Shopping Sites

A hacker won’t come looking for your credit cards in your purse or wallet. They’ll wait for you to log your personal and financial information on an online shopping site, then steal it from there.

This is why you must be careful about where you shop online. If you buy from a site that has weak cybersecurity measures, hackers can easily get your information if they compromise the site.

The question is, how do you determine the safety and reputation of an online shopping site?

First, it’s advisable to shop on well-known sites like Amazon. Such platforms have the resources to deploy strong cybersecurity measures, meaning customers’ information is safer.

However, this doesn’t mean you should avoid the smaller eCommerce sites. You just have to be extra careful when doing business with them.

Start by ensuring the site has HTTPS encryption. This technology ensures secure communication between two parties. When you enter your details to complete the purchase, for instance, HTTPS encrypts the information, meaning no third-party can access or read it.

It’s also important to read online reviews before making the decision to purchase from a certain site. 

What are other customers saying about the site’s user experience? If it has been compromised in the past, you’ll definitely find this information on the web.


Keep a Watchful Eye on Those Promo Emails

Let’s admit it: we all love a good deal.

Online shopping sites know this, which is why they are always sending promotional emails to their customers.

While a promo email can be an ideal chance to jump in and get score a crazy deal, it can also be a trap. Online fraudsters can send you a promo email that looks like it was sent from a legitimate shopping site.

Most of the time, the fraudulent email will contain an irresistible deal. All you need to do is click on it, view the item, and pay!

Excited by the prospect of making a saving, you proceed to pay without verifying whether you’re on the correct shopping site. Unbeknownst to you, you hand over your personal and financial information to hackers.

If you don’t want to be a victim of email phishing, keep a keen eye on those promotional emails. If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Avoid it!

Alternatively, you can contact the online store’s support department and enquire whether they are currently running a sale.


Pay Using a Credit Card

You probably have a credit card and a debit card.

When paying online, use your credit card, not the debit card.

Why? 

In the event that someone fraudulently uses your credit card to pay for goods and services, you won’t be responsible for the loss – as long as you report the issue. In any case, your total liability is $50, according to the Fair Credit Billing Act.

What’s more, credit card companies have a reputation for offering stronger consumer protection services. Most companies monitor users’ shopping habits and flag suspicious transactions. This means a fraudulent activity on your card will be detected early enough. 

On the other hand, debit cards don’t offer as much protection as credit cards.

According to the Electronic Funds Transfer Act, debit cards users have a $500 liability limit, and you must report fraudulent activity within 60 days. If this period lapses, you have no protection. Plus, debit card issuers take a long time to investigate and resolve fraudulent transactions.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should stop using your debit card online. In fact, it’s more financially prudent to pay via debit card because you will be spending your own money. With a credit card, it’s easy to rack up debt.

What you need to do is keep a close eye on your card statements. Review them once or twice every month and report any unfamiliar transactions. Also, block and report a lost or missing card as soon as possible.


Use a Secure e-Wallet

E-wallets are a popular way to make online payments.

These virtual bank accounts are far more convenient and cheaper than using cards, so you’ll find yourself needing one – if you don’t have it already.

There are several e-wallets to choose from, and they aren’t created equal. Some are more secure than others.

As such, be sure to research and settle on a company with the best and safest e-wallet management services. Read the terms and conditions before signing up.


Use Strong Passwords

When creating an account on any online payment site, use a strong password.

Although most sites have strength meters and can reject passwords that are weak, don’t go for one that meets the minimum requirements. Ensure your passwords uses a combination of numbers, letters, and special characters.

Sure, entering a long, difficult password can be a pain, but it’s worth it. Hackers will find a hard time trying to hack it, and will certainly give up!


Use These Tips for Making a Secure Payment Online

The internet has revolutionized how we do many things, including how we shop and pay for goods. 

Unfortunately, hackers are always looking for clever way to steal your information and use it fraudulently.

Although a lot depends on the security measures an online shopping site puts in places, using these tips for making secure payment will add an extra layer of security.

Stay tuned to our blog for more handy tips and hacks!

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