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Tips for shopping online safely

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With Christmas fast approaching and your social calendar filling up, the ease of online shopping is a real time saver. But before you give your credit card a workout, read these tips on how to stay safe while shopping online.

1. Shop from reputable brands

Anyone can create a website these days and there has been a surge in fake and professional looking online stores hoping to extract your personal data and credit card details. Cyber criminals will create websites that mimic existing sites to try to trick people into purchasing something or logging into their phishing site. These sites often look exactly like the real website so be careful to check the domain name and branding. If you’re unsure of the authenticity of a website, ask for more information before you enter any personal information.

Here are a few signs that you can look for to help you know if a company is real:

Prices are too low to believe – It’s great when you find a bargain, but you should be wary of sites that offer products for prices that are far lower than they should be.

Physical address and phone number – If the company lists a physical address and phone number (in a country you’ve heard of!) there is a higher chance that they are a real business. Reputable companies will list their information so you can contact them if there is a problem.

Return policy – Reputable sites should list their returns policy as well as their shipping policy. If you can’t find these on their website, maybe it’s time to rethink making that purchase.

2. Ensure the website is secure

Before making your purchase, check that the website you are shopping on is secure. Look for the padlock icon and “https” which indicates a secure site.

3. Secure your network

To avoid hacking risk, ensure your computer has up to date anti-virus software and firewall protection.

4. Shop from a secure location

Don’t take the risk of shopping while connected to a network you don’t control. If you’re out and about, it’s best to stick to the mobile data provided by your network when entering your personal details.

5. Don’t save your personal details

We know that time is of the essence and saving your personal details for your next purchase sounds like a great idea, but trust us it may not be worth it! This could leave you vulnerable if the website gets hacked. Plus, you’ve already saved time by avoiding the shopping centre carparks!

6. Save your receipts

Once you’ve made your purchase, make sure you save your receipt to keep a record of the purchase and possible merchant details (it also helps to keep track of your spend and avoid blowing your Christmas budget!)

 

With only two weeks left until Christmas, online shopping is a very convenient way to tick those gifts off your list. Just remember the above tips, stay alert and shop online safely.

For more helpful tips on how to look after your cards and safely use payment services during this Christmas season, please give us a call on 1300 747 747 or see our Terms and Conditions for Savings Accounts and Payment Services.

We wish you and your family a safe and Merry Christmas!

 

  Important Information

The information in this article is of a general nature and does not constitute as advice in relation to any investment of purchase. It has been produced without taking into consideration your personal financial circumstances, objectives or needs. You should read our Terms and Conditions for Savings Accounts and Payment Services available at qudosbank.com.au before applying for financial products and services. Qudos Mutual Limited trading as Qudos Bank ABN 53 087 650 557, AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 238 305.

 

Article published December 2016