Ecommerce 101: The Risks, Tips in Online Payment

credit: pixabay

MJ Gonzales │Executive Chronicles

Queuing even for 30 minutes is a no-no for busy executives. Fortunately, more and more service companies do their works to have online presence so their patrons save time and effort in transacting with them.   This is one of the many benefits of ecommerce as with just few touches one can do online shopping, internet banking or online payment.

Majority of local banks offer online banking where one of the features is you can do bills payments. Imagine if all Filipinos have knowledge about it, they don’t need to go malls or establishments that eat their precious time.  They can even pay airlines tickets, insurance, or school matriculation fees in the comfort of their home.

However there are also few limitations in paying through online bank websites.  Often the companies they enlist are the popular and big names in the industry on their platforms, thus you have to rely in online payment sites such Paypal, DragonPay, PesoPay, PayEasy, GCash and Smart Money.  With any of these sites, one can pay an individual merchant or online seller.   Furthermore, it is easy and in most cases, free to subscribe to their services unlike in the banks that sometimes you need to visit your local branch to activate your application.

credit: pixabay
credit: pixabay

Meantime, transacting in cyberspace has more risks than the traditional ones especially if the payers don’t know the latest scams and illegal schemes.  It’s important to be always cautious every time you transact using your credit cards or bank account because with one mistake you give a hacker an opportunity to milk money from you.    So, here are the three tips to secure you’re paying correctly online.

Don’t pay using a public computer or wi-fi connection.   Let’s say you are using your own gadget,   phishers and hackers will find way to juice information from that because you are connected to their hot spot.  So it’s better to have your own portable wifi modem or transact where you feel safe. In addition to this, turn off the wifi setting of your smartphone or tablet so you don’t connect automatically to suspicious wifi zones.

“It’s lucrative and easy to do,” vice president of engineering at CyberDefender said in an interview with Reader’s Digest (RD). “Criminals duplicate the legitimate Web page of a Wi-Fi provider like Verizon or AT&T and tweak it so it sends your information to their laptop.”

Read all the details before you click.   Don’t be tempted to click right away a “buy” button on an online shop.   It’s not only about the features or specs of an item you should know, but also how the merchant will settle you transaction.  In fact, it’s not surprising if a seller strategically put the details about extra fees and other inconveniences at the bottom of a post.

Avoid pishing by going straight to your trusted site.    Unless you’re aware or expecting to pay something or you have problem with a company, don’t click a link that is shared to you via email.  Credit card companies usually call via phone or send you a snail mail to inform about your outstanding balance.

As the leading online payment platform, scammers are using Paypal to lure victims to get information.  There are instances that subscribers will receive email that encourage them to log in on their account.  Normally, the subscriber will just click the link that’s shared also in the email to go straight to the website.   At the first glance, the site looks exactly as the original so the victims will just put their log in IDs and passwords. That’s it; the scammer does the “phising” process to access victim’s account and use it as he pleases.

“This [grammatical errors] is the most obvious tell of a fishy email. A real PayPal email will avoid spelling errors because the company portrays itself as a professional company and not a sloppy hacker. If there are any errors in the email just delete it immediately, and thank the guy trying to rob you for being so careless,” a Digital Trend’s tips to spot a Paypal scam.

Another note to consider is to install anti-virus software in your computer.  Hackers use viruses to get into your system and perform their techniques to have your information.