Shopping online is part of modern, daily life. Itâ€™s quick, convenient and can be done wherever and whatever you’re doing; but there is a price to pay for our reliance on the internet and whilst some of us may never experience credit card fraud & the chances are that you will.
This doesn’t mean that we have to abandon the internet completely, however – in fact most cases of credit card fraud still occurs offline, but we can choose to be savvy about how and where we shop on the web.
1. Check the http has an ˜s’
Before entering your card details on any site, always make sure to check that the address bar has both a padlock icon and that the http has that extra ‘s’ for security and maximum protection.
2. Only use a secure internet connection
You can browse to your heart’s content wherever you like, but your home network is secure for a reason â€“ and not just to stop others from using up your bandwidth. If the network you’re on isn’t secureâ then neither are your credit card details.
3. Never buy from websites with links from spam emails
These websites are highly likely to be fraudulent and it is extremely unwise to purchase anything from them. You can recognise a spam email if:
a. It isn’t addressed to anyone in particular
b. It doesn’t contain any information identifying you personally
c. Your mail provider has marked it as junk
d. You don’t recognise the company or services offered
4. Avoid making online purchases on a public computer
This can include any computer you use (including at work) that is potentially accessed by another individual. All computers save or ‘cache’ information automatically in order to make your browsing experience faster and more intuitive; the downside to this is that if your details are cached, then whoever uses the computer next may get hold of them.
5. Choose strong passwords that are at least 10 characters
Most sites these days ask for passwords to be a minimum of 6 characters, but 10 is better as it exponentially increases the number of possible combinations & making it trickier for hackers to get access. Ideally, your password would be a combination of capital and lower case letters, numbers and symbols (i.e. $ &). If in doubt you can always try a random password generator.
If you find it difficult to remember your password(s) then you could use a smartphone vault app or similar.