The need for Online shopping cybersecurity soars as lockdown fraud hits £16m in the UK alone — shop #cybersecure!
It’s 2020, the year of ‘all things remote’ where our digital trails replaced our physical footsteps and most of our daily transactions packed and moved with us online.
And just like that, our traditional view of pickpockets snatching our wallets when we least expect it has evolved into cybercriminals targeting things like our banking details via online shopping deceit.
In fact, according to ComputerWeekly, online shopping fraud has hit £16m since lockdown in the UK alone, with about 16,000 people affected, mostly among younger shoppers.
Does this mean that online shopping isn’t safe? — Absolutely NOT. But just like you have to mind your wallet when walking down a busy street, you need to protect your banking details when shopping online via the right Online Shopping Cybersecurity practices.
Here are 5 common online shopping cybersecurity mistakes you’ll want to avoid making:
Buying from Unknown Sites ⛔
Trick question: Say you spot that exact product you’ve been searching for, you feel delighted, but it’s sold on an anonymous site — Should you go for it right away?
Your first instinct may be ‘Oh yeah! Why not?’ – but here’s what you should do first 👇
“If you’re using a site you’ve not used before, do your research and check reviews before making a purchase” Action Fraud advises.
Asecurelife also shares 10 powerful steps on how to research and spot a fake or scam website. Make sure to check them out.
Those ‘Phishy’ emails 📩
If it starts with words like ‘CONGRATS’, ‘IMPORTANT’ or ‘URGENT’ – Shield up and investigate! — Especially if it asks you to enter banking details or payment account information.
By now almost ALL of us have seen emails impersonating Amazon, Paypal or any other household brand with the subject line ‘’Update your payment details’’ — Well, DON’T!
Always contact the ‘expected sender’ first via their official contact channels to confirm the authenticity of an email before disclosing any banking details OR clicking on any links/ attachments.
Checkout our 5 Tell-tale signs of a phishing email to spot those phishing attempts like a pro.
Think twice about HOW you pay 💳
The payment method you use also plays an important role when it comes to online shopping cybersecurity.
Here’s what you need to know 👇
- Credit Cards: According to Discover, credit cards are better to use for online shopping than debit cards. That’s because they aren’t directly linked to your bank account and they provide an extra layer of protection against fraud, which makes getting a refund easier.
- Digital payment Services: Digital payment services like PayPal are safer as they allow you to make purchases without entering your card information on numerous sites. There’s also a much lower risk of money being lost or stolen there according to Express Computer.
Activate two-factor authentication & alerting ✌️
We ALWAYS recommend activating two-factor authentication (2FA) for all types of cybersecurity authentication, including Online Shopping Cybersecurity and payment accounts of course.
This gives the account owner (you) an additional security layer to verify a login or transaction attempt. It’s usually very simple to set up and typically involves a phone number or an email address.
Enterprises can also use real-time alerting and URL blocking tools like GAT Shield to secure things like their company credit card and banking details in Google Workspace & Google Chrome. Learn more here.
If it’s too good to be true, it PROBABLY is 👎
Everybody loves a good bargain. Take it from the ‘bargain hunter’ here 🙋♀️ But one of the first rules of scoring one is actually checking the if there’s catch’’ there.
Too often cybercriminals lure online shoppers in with tempting offers that are simply ‘’too good to be true’’. To that, my advice is to ALWAYS investigate before giving out any payment details or attempting a purchase.
Well, that’s it from us today. We wish you happy and above all ‘Safe’ online shopping sprees.
Found our Online Shopping Cybersecurity tips helpful? — Make sure to share them with family and friends on social media using the buttons below 👇