Philippines is increasingly embracing online shopping because of its convenience. You can find big bargains right at your finger tips. There is free shipping when you reach a certain amount. Even the returns are pretty easy, with the right retailers.
With the rise of technologies, scammers are also getting more creative and techie in finding ways to get our money. So, as online shopper, you need to be clever not to give our card details to the wrong person. Here are some tips on how to protect yourself from scams when you shop online.
1.) Use Familiar Websites
Most probably you heard it from your friends and family, or maybe you have seen it on TV. If you know the website and you see that there are other people who have purchased from it, then there is a lesser chance to be ripped off. This is not foolproof but at least you can ask people about their experience buying from the site.
2.) Watch Out for Poor Grammar
Reputable organizations spend time crafting emails or any forms of notices before sending. They go through a rigorous process of proofing, spell check, and grammar check. Be cautious when you receive notices with poor grammar or spelling. Most phishing emails don’t go through such process.
3.) Google for Reviews and Complaints
If you are not familiar with the company, check what other people are saying about it.
4.) Check for a Security Encryption
It is best to buy on a secured website. Don’t give your credit card information to websites without security encryption known as Secure Sockets Layer or SSL. Depending on your browser, you will know when the website is using SSL when:
- URL will start with HTTPS:// (instead of HTTP:.//)
- A closed padlock icon or unbroken key will appear usually next to the web address
- Never send credit card information through emails.
5.) Check if there are any other hidden charges before you buy
Find out about the billing, guarantees and delivery before sending out your payment details. It is always useful to take a copy of the online orders. If you are charged more than what you have ordered, or if you have late delivery, you can fight back.
6.) Monitor your purchases and bill
Regularly check your bill to make sure there are no fraudulent charges. If you see something wrong, call your bank to quickly address the issue.
7.) Use Strong Passwords
Make sure you utilize untraceable passwords when purchasing online.
8.) Log-out Every time You Use Public Terminal
Don’t give the next user the chance to use your personal or credit information. When you are in the internet café, always remember to log-out even if you are only using it to check your email.
9.) Stay Away From Offers That Are Too Good To Be True
Scammers always use it as baits to gather personal information such as passwords and credit card details. It can appear to be from a legitimate company and can be very convincing. Here are some examples:
- You have won a raffle promo you didn’t join
- Get rich quick schemes
- Miracle cures or weight loss pills
- A promise of 100% return of investment that’s risk free
Always be vigilant. If you are not sure with who/what you are dealing online, it is best to investigate first. Skepticism can go a long way toward saving you from the scams.