The web is a great place for shopping and banking, but it can affect your personal finances if you aren’t careful.
According to Experian analysts, in 2015 we expect a new wave of crimes related to the leakage of information on payment cards, specifically targeting payment information which is stored in a cloud. Your payment accounts, passwords and other personal information will be at risk.
Privatoria recommends people adopt security measures related to online payment data. We have prepared ten steps for you to ensure the security of your payment information.
The ten required steps to protect your payment data and credit cards details:
1) Use strong passwords. The recommended size for a password is at least 8 characters which include one capital letter, one lowercase letter, numbers and special characters, for example, Privatoria453! This password is much harder to crack than 123456.
It is also recommended to use different passwords for different Web resources.
2) Make sure that the site has SSL (secure sockets layer) encryption installed. You can determine if it does because an SSL URL will start with https:// (instead of http://)
3) Stop hackers and insecure websites from getting your credit card information by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) when you make your purchases online. Cyber criminals can intercept your billing information if you are using an insecure connection.
4) Never perform payment transactions via free WiFi or public computers. Over 60% of all free WiFi spots are exposed to hacking. This cyber attack can take less than 2 seconds.
5) Don’t send your credit card details via email, post them on social media (even in a private message), or enter them on an unsecured website. Only transfer credit cards details online through data encryption services, such as Privatoria Secure Data and Message Storage.
6) Use virtual credit cards for online shopping. Virtual credit cards work just like regular credit cards, except they don’t use your real credit card information. They have a different card number, verification code, and expiration date. You can generate a unique virtual card for each website you shop at. You should contact your bank manager for this. That way you can shop online like normal, but if a website loses or abuses your credit card on file, it won’t hurt your real credit card.
7) Sign up for electronic fraud alerts. Some companies offer alerts which deliver information about unusual activity on your account to your cell phone or email address.
8) Use a payment method with buyer protection. Websites, valid and trustworthy ones, may have one more layer of security for online credit and debit card purchases to protect you. You might be asked for another password or piece of information. Visa Card’s “Verified by Visa” and MasterCard’s “SecureCode” are examples of this.
9) Research your retailer. Make sure to fully check out the retailer’s credentials if it’s not a big name you have heard of before. A quick search of the site name should turn up plenty of results and reviews about the service. Be sure to keep an eye out for overly positive reviews on user forums that might not be legitimate.
10) Of course, do not forget to turn on SMS confirmation of transactions in your bank account. Don’t pay on questionable sites and be careful online in general.
Don’t forget that some sites can charge you higher prices than other people for the same item simply based on your location, interests and browsing history. Using a VPN makes these tactics impossible.
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