First published: 16 November 2022 @ 6:00 pm
Online retailers and internet connection have made shopping a lot easier and more accessible than it used to be. However, as the number of internet users continues to increase, so does the number of cyber criminals.
Most people don’t realize that shopping on the internet or website is a lot different from shopping in person. Online criminals are known to monitor sites and conduct online frauds with much greater ease than ever before.
This article will help you avoid becoming a victim of online fraud by sharing with you some tips and tricks for safe shopping online.
1. Never reveal your personal information on the internet
You should never disclose your full name, address, phone number or credit card details over the internet. Most cyber criminals are constantly on the lookout for people who provide their personal information.
Once they get hold of your personal details, they will use them to commit fraudulent activities. This includes things like identity theft and bank fraud.
It’s a lot safer to be discreet about your identity online and reveal none of your personal details to anyone else online, unless you’re 100% sure that the person is an actual friend or acquaintance.
2. Be wary of pop-up ads and scam emails
Pop-up ads are usually linked to an adware program which can be installed on your computer without you even realizing it!
These ads usually have links in them which lead you to pages where you can download some kind of file or program. These files or programs could infect your computer with malware and other harmful virus.
So, if you come across any pop-up ads on your computer, please do not click on them. The same goes for scam emails.
If you receive an email from a stranger claiming that you’ve won some kind of lottery or something similar, it’s highly likely that it’s a scam email.
3. Research the seller you are about to buy from
There are a lot of fraudulent sellers that try to get your personal information. It’s important to research the online store you are about to buy from before making the purchase.
For instance, if you are buying something like a new smartphone, you should be able to find out if the seller is a real person and how many people have made purchases from the seller.
Also, you should be able to find out if the seller is registered with the local authority or not.
If you’re buying something like a car or any other expensive item, it’s also important that you get it checked for any mechanical problems before making the purchase.
4. Print Out Transaction Records, Chat History, and Emails
Print out all of your online transactions and chat history from your online shopping sessions. By doing this, you can keep a record of all the transactions and electronic statements that you’ve made online.
If something goes wrong with the purchase, you will be able to get some kind of proof of your purchase if needed.
5. Use Private Connections
Most internet users do not use private connections for online shopping. This is a big mistake because it allows cyber criminals to spy on your online activities.
To avoid being spied on, you should always use private connections whenever you are making an online transaction.
If you don’t have a private connection enabled, please enable it for the sake of your own safety. You can enable private connections using VPNs or proxies.
Also, use antivirus program or a security program to block access to any unsafe sites.
Making Safe Online Purchases
The above tips and tricks are all you need to stay safe during your online shopping experience. Hopefully, with these tips, your financial transaction will not be hijacked by cyber criminals.
If you have any additional tips to share with us, please share them with us in the comments section below.