From your weekly groceries to a once in a lifetime holiday, you can buy it all online. The widespread use of credit cards online has chipped away at the fear and apprehension this method of shopping was generally viewed with when it first emerged. But online security is even more important now than it was during the early years of Internet shopping. Keep your online credit cards details safe and secure with these tips.
If you make an online purchase while connected to a public WiFi service, you may be putting your payment details at risk. Online credit cards information should be entered only while using a private network – look out for the padlock symbol in the url.
Before making a purchase you will be asked to tick a box to signify you have read the terms and conditions. Before marking this box you should take the time to read the small print. Look out for clauses that state any fees you will incur for paying online with credit cards rather than debit cards. Switching payment methods may save you money.
Some credit card services offer an additional layer of security via a password. Your credit card provider will invite you to set a password for your card, and before any payment is processed a pop-up box will ask you to enter it. Although this may seem like an undesirable additional step when your goal is to complete the transaction as quickly as possible, this extra security measure could save you the hassle of encountering fraud on your account.
When you spend over £100 on your credit card, the purchase is protected under the Consumer Credit Act. Section 75 of the legislation makes the credit card company jointly responsible with the retailer for any problem you might have regarding the products purchased.
You should also be aware that under ‘distance selling regulations’ you have seven days from receipt of your purchase to claim a refund. You can also claim a refund if the items you ordered do not arrive within a reasonable amount of time (30 days).
Your credit card and bank card are protected by a number of different security features.
When you make a purchase in a physical shop, or withdraw cash from a machine, you will use your PIN to verify your identity.
To log into your account you will need to use your account password.
When you make a an online purchase you will need to enter the CVV2 code, a security number of 3 or 4 digits on the back of your card. A legitimate site will not ask for your password or PIN, and you should never provide this information when making an online purchase.
Whilst it is important that consumers take steps to protect themselves against fraud, retailers share the burden of responsibility. Legislation and industry guidelines require businesses to implement certain security standards to protect your data and payment details from hackers.
Before you enter any payment details it is essential you are confident that the site you are using is safe and secure.
There are a few things you should look for:
A padlock symbol in the address bar denotes a secure site
The web address should begin with ‘https://’, the ‘s’ means ‘secure’
If the price looks too good to be true, then it probably is. Beware illegal or pirated products
Look for online reviews of the retailer to verify their trustworthiness.
By working together consumers and retailers are improving the security of online payment processing.