Earlier we posted on Cyber security tips and strategies during the holiday season, and we looked at measures retailers can take to heighten their online security. However we would like to generally talk on safety measures to take when making any form of online payments or transaction.
We can all attest to the fact that using the internet to make payments to utility, phone, credit card, insurance and any service or product at all saves considerable time and effort. It is also a simple and convenient way to contribute to charity either directly or sponsoring participants in money-raising activities. There are, however, risks associated with making payments some of which are:
- Fraud resulting from making payments over unsecured web pages.
- Emails directing you to fake websites set up to collect your payment card details.
This article will provide you with the knowledge to make payments securely online.
Before entering payment details on a website, ensure that the link is secure, in these ways:
- There should be a padlock symbol in the browser window frame, which appears when you attempt to log in or register. Be sure that the padlock is not on the page itself …as fraudulent sites do that.
- The web address should begin with ‘https://’ instead of the conventional ‘http://’. The ‘s’ represents ‘secure’.
- If you are using the latest version of your browser, the address bar or the name of the site owner should turn green.
When making a payments, use secure payment sites such as PayPal, GTBANK GTPay, INTERSWITCH InternetPay, ETRANZACT – never transfer the money directly into their bank account.
Additional steps to take include:
- Always log out of sites into which you have logged in or registered details especially if you are using a shared computer. Simply closing your browser is not enough to ensure privacy.
- Keep receipts – electronic or otherwise stored somewhere for easy tracking or reference.
- Check credit card and bank statements carefully after payment to ensure that the correct amount has been debited, and also that no fraud has taken place as a result of the transaction.
- Ensure you have effective and updated antivirus and firewall running before you go online.
If you think you have been a victim of online fraudulent activities, don’t hesitate to contact your Bank or other relevant agencies. Please share your thoughts and concerns with us in the comment section below.