Festive season discounts and special offers by online merchants are too lucrative to ignore. But it’s best to be cautious while making online payments.
The festive season is underway, and so is the sale season with big online companies lining up their discounts and offers. While the festive deals are a good way to get great value-for-money offers online, the world of online shopping requires careful handling to avoid any monetary loss.
Here’s a five-point checklist to ensure your online payments are done safely:
Purchase Only From SSL Encrypted Websites
The growing popularity of online shopping has brought many merchants on this popular platform. The festive season discounts on offer by such merchants may sometimes be too lucrative to ignore. However, if a merchant does not have a secure payment gateway, there are chances of a financial data breach.
Ensure the e-commerce website you are shopping with is SSL (Secure Sockets Layer )-certified. The easiest way to figure this is by checking if the website has a ‘https’ protocol instead of a ‘http’. This provides an extra security layer which keeps all your financial information encrypted from the time it is entered by you till the time it is received by the merchant.
Avoid Using Unsafe Shopping Apps
If you are shopping from the mobile app of a merchant, make use of well-established apps or marketplaces only. Many such shopping applications seek permissions and can gain access to sensitive information like your passwords, net banking details or stored Credit Card information. It is best to install online shopping apps of reputable merchants only.
Use Virtual Keyboard To Avoid Keystroke Logging
Irrespective of the payment channel being used when shopping online, entering of financial data like passwords or card numbers, including CVV numbers, must be done through a virtual keyboard. Many hackers make use of keyword logging tools to steal the punched numbers when paying online.
Virtual keyboards add a higher encrypted layer of security making it fully secure and almost impossible for hackers to steal any such sensitive financial information.
Opt For Virtual Cards
If you are a regular shopper, opt for a virtual card this season instead of using your Credit Card or Debit Card. Virtual cards can easily be made by logging into your net banking account for both Debit and Credit Cards. The virtual cards usually come with no extra fees, making them safe, secure and pocket-friendly.
Beware Of Discount Coupon Code
The festive season is the time for promotional emails, offers, discount codes, coupons, etc. You should use any of those discounted coupons or codes with caution. Ensure that the coupons received are directly from the merchant. Many times buyers simply use the link provided on such emails, considering them to be from genuine merchants. The end result is a loss of financially sensitive data which becomes tough to track. Such discounts offered by third-party merchants are often used by scammers to steal sensitive information. Hence, all such third-party discounts are best avoided even if they may appear to be genuine.
By following the above-mentioned basic safety etiquettes, you can ensure your festive season shopping remains joyful and you remain worry-free from any possible financial losses.