In: Customers

Tips For Online Shopping

There are endless reasons why an individual will repetitively and routinely resort to online shopping. A shopper will frequently prefer virtual shopping over a walk into a brick and mortar store undoubtedly because it offers a buyer the possibility of lower prices, better comparable offers, a mind-boggling selection in a thought-provoking way, convenience and the ease of doorstep delivery.

The absence of not only arduous queues but also the temptation of impulse buying, the flexibility of time and non-geographic location restrictions is more reason why virtual shopping is a widely-accepted exercise.

However, online shopping has its risks. The popularity, ease and ensuring profitability of online shopping has resulted in unscrupulous people looking to take advantage of unguarded shoppers. Deception is rife with setting up a website that mimics a valid one is possible at the click of a mouse. These With these phoney websites target an online shoppers’ personal information, passwords and credit information giving forth an invasion and theft in the most unsuspecting of ways.

Precaution is a necessity and a few measures would cushion an online shopper from unanticipated fraud.

  1. Use familiar websites

Downloading store-specific apps and purchasing through them without the need to browse the web is a safe way. Search results can be manipulated and direct one inadvertently to sites laden with fraudsters.

2. Install a reliable anti-malware program

This is to avert and shield your PC/mobile/tablet from being infiltrated and infected by malware that can damage your files, steal confidential personal data and collect passwords.

3. Optimise your PC’s security settings

Scanning your PC/mobile/tablet systems helps identify problems whilst increasing reliability and safety. A trusted anti-virus software with a regular update feature will help optimise the security of your device and prevent the theft of personal data.

4. Save a copy of the order

For traceability, refund and proof of payment should things turn unpleasant and unexpected, always save a copy of your order and payment confirmation.

5. Sites with SSL (secure socket layers) encryption

It is recommended to shop online from sites which have a valid SSL certificate. Such sites have their URL start with HTTPS:// and an icon of a locked padlock appear in the search box. These sites meet the international standards for securing and encrypting your personal data in order to minimise the possibility of an online fraud.

6. Give the least amount of information

Be cautious of websites which require too much personal or sensitive data which you may think would not be necessary to complete your order successfully. This could include a request for your passwords or certain bank details.

7. Shopping with a Debit/Credit Card

Credit cards may at times offer more protection than debit cards in online shopping. However, no credit card/ debit card information should be shared in an email.

8. Use strong passwords & secure connections

It is safer to shop at home than relying on Wi-Fi hotspots or unsecured networks because via these networks confidential information can be harvested by hackers more easily. It is recommended to use at least 8 characters in your password. These should be a mix of lower and upper case letters, numerals and special characters.

9. Check bank statements often

Whether one is using a credit card or a debit card, it is imperative that you check your statement frequently to ensure that the online purchase you have made is correct in value and to pick out any suspicious charges that you may not be aware of.


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