Online shopping seems to be finally going mainstream in the country. A recent Assocham survey
revealed online shopping in the country rise by over 155% as compared to last year’s 85%.
However, as growth beckons online retailers, security remains a key concern. The recent hacking
of popular shopping websites like eBay and Target highlight the need for security in the virtual world.
Here are five tips to stay safe when you buy things on the internet.
1. Switch off Wi-Fi when not used for long periods
It’s easy to forget about switching off one’s broadband wireless and computer (and leaving it
on standby) these days, but do keep in mind that Wi-Fi, by its very nature, can be used by
people you don’t want in your network.
Even a half-competent hacker can access your computer via an internet connection and
steal various passwords and other confidential banking information. Whether you are a high
value target or not, make sure that you disconnect from the internet when you do not require
You might get an email with a URL that claims to link you to an external site. If you are
already registered for such a service from a bank or shopping website, do not click on such
There have been cases of malicious users sending emails with fake website links that are
designed exactly like a bank or shopping website’s original website. Once you enter your
login details and password on such a website, they can be stored by a third party and can be
used to log in to your account.
The third party can either make purchases on your behalf or transfer funds. Visit the actual
website yourself and when logging on, type https://, which makes your session encrypted.
3.Suspicious ads and pop-ups
Disregard any unsolicited or t suspicious looking pop-ups that appear during your online
4.Shopping online using an internet tablet
Using a tablet, regardless of what make or operating system, is safe if you follow the same
rules as when you’re using a laptop or desktop.
If the bank’s app has just been introduced and is relatively new, give it a skip and use the
browser in stead as the app could have bugs. Other than that, there’s almost no way
someone could sneak any sort of spyware onto your tablet unless you’ve jailbroken it.
You should, of course, set a passcode on your tablet for added security. Additionally, set up
a location-based search app in the unfortunate event that you lose your tablet.
5.Are WI-FI passwords the best bet?
Whether you’re purchasing something online or transacting, hacking becomes easier when
the website is not using SSL security.
While all banks that offer internet banking use multiple layers of security, not all shopping
websites do. It makes better sense to stick to popular shopping websites.
For home use, mac address filtering works better than WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy), apart
from WPA protection for Wi-Fi.
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