For many, the prospect of shopping whilst sitting in your PJs on the couch with your feet up seems like a brilliant idea. Online shopping is convenient, simple and often provides more choice for the buyer.
However, have you ever been concerned that the person you are purchasing from is not real?
This week – National Consumer Fraud Week – is all about ‘outsmarting the scammer!’ through smart online shopping. Scammers are increasingly sophisticated in how they deliver scams, taking advantage of new technology and communication methods to try and slip under your radar.
The plethora of Internet devices that we depend on today can often be taken advantage of by those who wish to target you. Alarmingly, the Australian Bureau of Statistics Personal Fraud Survey 2010-11 showed that Australians lost $1.4 billion due to personal fraud such as credit card fraud, identity theft and scams.
Whilst this may put you off buying or selling online – never fear! There are ways to secure your identity and wallet. These 5 tips will ensure that you, your money and your shopping experience remains within your safe hands:
- Think before you click – if a deal is too good to be true, often it is, so don’t risk it.
- Do your research – see what other shoppers and reviewers have to say about the site and the person you’re dealing with. Often sites will have seller’s ratings and feedback, like eBay so that you can suss out exactly where and who you’re buying from.
- Protect your identity – Keep your personal and financial details private and never share your PINs or log-on banking passwords with anyone, including close friends and family.
- Keep your computer secure – Anti-virus software is a must to detect and remove certain viruses.
- Only pay via secure payment methods – Before paying for anything, check the URL starts with ‘https’ and shows a closed padlock symbol to indicate that it is secure.
Each year we look to give an aspiring uni students the chance to gain some professional experience and learn about business operations through a cadetship. Fostering the growth of young minds is a passion, and benefits everyone involved.