Using money online isn’t something we’re afraid of doing, in fact we’re so accustomed to shopping and buying online that we’ve become somewhat numb to the risks it can involve. In the back of our minds we all know how dangerous the internet can be, particularly how rife identity theft is, and yet a lot of us would rather ignore that fact than take extra precautions. Some users will never experience problems, even if they have no fail safes in place, but unfortunately that isn’t the general rule for online customers, and so knowing how to keep your finances safe is a must.
Respected Brands Only
Contrary to what you may think, this isn’t about excluding small, start up businesses in favour of big brands, but it is more about rising awareness that not every website is respected or well known within the industry. Therefore don’t visit any URLs you’ve never heard, nor should you purchase anything through a site that doesn’t have any secure payment methods in place; the latter is a key indicator of whether a website is safe or not. Methods such as Skrill, an e-wallet similar to that of Paypal and Neteller, only work with companies they trust, and therefore you can feel relaxed when you see them involved with a business. Including the UK’s top online casino, Betway, and a list of reputable retailers, their network is one you can trust your money to.
Record Keeping is Important
We all have bank statements and email confirmations hidden about on our computers, but sometimes it’s better to go one up from that and actually keep a written and digital log separately as well. It may sound like overkill, and we hope that’s all ever all it is, but if you are unlucky enough to be hit by hackers, you want to have everything up to date to prove what you did and didn’t spend. You don’t have to be an exceptional bookkeeper, just some detailed notes of when, what, where, and price will prove sufficient enough should the unthinkable happen.
Think Before You Click
All the websites we use leave some form of digital trace online, which talented hackers can find and exploit. What this means is that they can come up with creative ways to get you to part with your money, one of which is scam emails. A lot of the time the emails are convincingly written, even show company logos, and for all intents and purposes look like the real thing. So be caution before you click any links that are embedded in an email. Instead take a closer look at the email address of the sender, for more often than not it is an unofficial, unrelated address that gives scammers away immediately.