Online trading is becoming increasingly popular and our everyday life can no longer be imagined without it. And no wonder, because it is fast, convenient and in many cases also cheaper than shopping on site. There are indeed many benefits to shopping online, but security experts warn that there are numerous risks involved. Thousands of fake shops appear around the world every day to make quick money and then disappear again without a trace. So that you do not become a victim of fraud or data abuse on the Internet, we have put together some important tips for safe online shopping here.
Identify safe online shops and reputable providers
Only buy from trustworthy and reputable online stores or at least those that really offer a reasonable description of their goods and deliver them on time and in good quality. To protect yourself from scammers, it is imperative to check the reliability of the website before making a purchase. There are several possibilities for that. The “Federal Office for Information Security” has a few recommendations are listed here. Make sure that well-known seals of approval and symbols can easily be forged.
Don’t respond to suspicious email offers
Be careful with spam emails with huge discounts and special offers. Be especially careful if the message is in broken German or if something is simply wrong – such as an unexpected delivery confirmation with files attached.
DO NOT rely on suspicious links as there are many fake shops out there that look like a duplicate of an otherwise reliable online retailer. Once you’ve entered your real username and password, these could most likely be sold to the thriving black market.
Remain critical and check out good deals
If an offer is too good to be true, then it is likely not really true. Especially when it invites you to buy one of the season’s most popular products, such as “cheap Ray Ban sunglasses”. Such offers are very tempting, but do not believe in impossibly low prices. Of course, not all merchants who offer big discounts are scammers, but ask yourself if the savings are worth the effort. The risk of never receiving the ordered products or of poor quality is high. At least try to search for the specific offer or dealer on Google and learn more about it.
Conduct secure transactions over the Internet
Regardless of the desired payment method, the following applies: Pay attention to the security features in your web browser during the payment process. Check that the website is using SSL encryption. With an encrypted data connection, the abbreviation “https: //” appears in the address line of the browser. You can also see a small padlock or key icon at the bottom or in the address bar.
The SSL certificate encrypts the information that you transmit over the Internet, e.g. B. Your credit card number and CCV, and ensures more security when exchanging data. If in any doubt, search for the website on google combined with a search term like “fraud”. If something is wrong, you will find out.
Use a credit card, not a debit card
If you pay by debit card, the money will be withdrawn directly from your account. When paying by credit card, you have the option of having unlawfully withdrawn amounts posted back. So the chance of getting your money back is much greater than if you were shopping with a debit card. Let yourself also be informed which other advantages free current account including credit card for shopping and insofar as the cardholder is liable for any misuse.
Check your account balance regularly
Track all purchases until you receive the product you ordered so you can be prepared if you see anything suspicious. Continue to carefully monitor your bank accounts and credit card statements to ensure that no unauthorized transactions are being made. For example, if you have never been to Russia or you don’t know someone from Moscow or the region, it is impossible to make transactions in that region. The sooner you discover this problem, the more likely it is that the money could be recovered. Using SMS notifications of transactions with your card is also a good idea.
The methods used by cyber criminals are diverse and not always recognizable at first glance. For example, some viruses may add additional fields to the online fillable forms. So if the online shop tries to collect too much information about you (like ID number for buying flowers), cancel the transaction and immediately scan your computer for viruses. Remain critical and avoid shopping traps online!
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