Since the Internet connection experienced an expansion on a global scale, a new world of possibilities opened up that allowed for more dynamic ways of doing business.
E-commerce, as this new way of doing business was called, involves the buying and selling of goods and services over the Internet, and has been very well accepted around the world, so much so that it is now enjoying great growth because transactions are made with ease, speed and convenience; customers have more offers available than those found in physical stores, since they can buy in stores in different countries and only wait for their products to be sent to them by mail; in addition, they save time by not having to leave their homes and stand in long lines to purchase a product, especially on dates such as Christmas, when activity in shopping centers increases.
Although shopping on the Internet is very well accepted, it is necessary to be aware that not all websites are safe, and that is why in this article I will give you some tips to learn how to shop online safely.
Prepare the equipment from which you will make your online purchases
Studies have shown that the majority of the world’s population uses a smartphone rather than a computer; however, when shopping online, consumers prefer to use a computer.
If you are making an online purchase from your computer, you should first check to see if the operating system it has installed is up to date, and you should also check to see if it has an anti-virus installed and updated. This will help you avoid a possible computer security problem.
If you decide to make a purchase from your mobile phone or from your tablet, it is advisable to do so from apps downloaded from official application repositories, in order to avoid the theft of your information. Also try to make your purchases only with your phone’s data connection.
Make online purchases from a secure connection
Although it is quite convenient to connect to the wireless network of a shopping mall, library, bar or cafe and check out the products you want to buy, it is not recommended that you make your purchase from that connection, since packets of information transmitted over a public network can be intercepted by cybercriminals, i.e. your personal information, including your bank details. It is recommended that you make your purchases from your home or office.
Make your purchases from websites with a good reputation
When we are in search of a product or service on the Internet, it is quite normal that we arrive at websites that are not very well known. If you notice something that makes you doubt the site you have arrived at, you can pay attention to certain details to clear up your doubts. The first thing you should do is make sure that the URL of the website you are on starts with https:// and has a lock icon on the left side of the URL. These details, although they seem minimal, have an important meaning for a buyer: the site has a digital security certification, which ensures that no one will be able to access the data you send through this site.
You can also check the comments that other customers have published about the products or services offered by this website. While some sites do buy reviews, you may also find a reference that will give you an idea of the company behind the site. Trust the comments you read just a little bit.
It is very likely that an apparently very good offer on a product will reach you through an email. If the offer is almost unbelievable because it is so good, you should be wary of it. Many criminals use this method to get you to go to websites where your personal information is stolen. This technique is known as phishing. Avoid it!
Make your payment securely online
Once you have found the product or service you need and have verified that the website where you will make the purchase is safe, check the security and return policy, to know what to do in case you are sent a product that does not comply with the characteristics of the one you bought. Finally, it’s time to pay.
When shopping online, it’s best to use a card that has a low credit limit; if the website you’re shopping at gives you the option to pay with a PayPal account, use it without hesitation – it’s the best way to protect your bank accounts.
Once you’ve made your purchase, save the transaction receipt and also keep a record of your conversation with the product seller. Afterwards, you just need to periodically check your bank account transactions; if you notice an anomaly, contact your bank and report the case.
Now you know how to shop safely on a website!