Online activities can be a convenient and fun activity, provided you take a few precautions to ensure that your information and money stay safe. Shopping online has become a part of every individual’s lives which is pretty much convenient and at the same time it is quite risky.
Just as marketplaces have become virtual, so have the scammers that once lurked on street corners. It’s important to not be lulled into a state of complacency. Following certain precautions can go a long way in protecting you from cyber crime.
1. Make your authentication process two-pronged whenever possible.
You should choose this option on websites that offer it because when an identity-specific action is required on top of entering your password and username, it becomes significantly harder for fraudsters to access your information.
2. Secure your phone.
Avoiding public Wifi and installing a screen lock are simple steps that can hinder hackers. Some fraudsters have begun to immediately discount secure phones altogether. Installing anti-malware can also be beneficial.
3. Subscribe to alerts.
A number of institutions that provide financial services, credit card issuers included, offer customers the chance to be notified when they detect suspicious activity. Turn those notifications on to stay informed about credit card activity linked to your account.
4. Be careful when issuing transactions online.
Again, some institutions offer notifications to help with this, which will alert you when your card is used online. It might also be helpful to institute limits on amounts that can be spent with your card online.
5. Make Sure The Internet Connection Is Secure
Before you give your payment information, check for indicators that security software is in place. Smartphones are not as protected against threats as your desktop.
6. Use Safe Payment Options
Credit cards can be the safer choice for online shopping — if someone manages to intercept your financial information online, they can do less damage and you have more recourse than if you’d used a debit card.
7. Keep your identity safe
Don’t share passwords or choose one that can be easily guessed. Change your password at frequent intervals. Always use two-factor or strong authentication which combines something you know (username and password) with something you have (a credential such as a card, token or mobile phone) to verify an identity or verify a transaction.
8. Keep all software on your PC up-to-date
By keeping your software up-to-date, you ensure that potential vulnerabilities (including zero-days) don’t breach your security. This also ensures that cybercriminals and hackers can’t steal your data.