Your guide to safe online shopping

Many of us are shopping online rather than stepping foot in a store, yet not all of us know how to shop online safely. Here we look at measures you can take to avoid the traps, pitfalls and fears of the World Wide Web and handing over your credit card details.

Firstly, you need a credit card with high security. Mastercard’s SecureCode is one option; it’s an additional layer of protection used by online retailers in 122 countries around the world. Keep your transactions private by signing up for SecureCode through your bank.

Your 28 Degrees card also offers full protection with the Mastercard $0 liability guarantee. You’re protected if any unauthorised transactions are made on the card, regardless of where the transactions took place; in a store, over the phone, online, via a mobile device or at an ATM, you will be protected. See full terms & conditions here.

Found something you absolutely love online? Make sure you’re buying from a reputable business. Are contact details such as email address or phone number easy to locate to ask questions? Sticking with the bigger companies can pay off here. Also, when shopping online, it’s most important to identify secure website addresses. Secure websites begin with https:// not http://. Also you want to look out for a closed padlock symbol in the corner of your browser.

Does a company want you to pay through their app? Check they’re using a secure connection to transmit your information. Using the website might be a better option.

Don’t get stuck paying fees. You can use a credit card like 28 Degrees for online purchase from home as well and still benefit from no international fees on purchases and no currency conversion.

If something doesn’t quite feel right check scamwatch.gov.au. Tempted by an offer of a gift card in exchange for a few credit card details? Check scamwatch and you’ll quickly find out it’s exactly that: a scam. According to the site, Australians lost more than $229 million in scams in 2015!

Want to pass your credit card details onto someone else? Don’t use social media or emails.

You might not even think about it, but avoid plugging in your credit card details while using public Wi-Fi. Why? They might not be using encryption to protect your (and anyone else who’d using it too) information. Same goes for public computers in airports, libraries and so on.

If you make transactions on your phone, make sure it has a phone password in case it gets stolen. Keep devices up to date as well and always log out after making purchases.

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