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Stay Protected This Christmas — ESET Shares Top Tips for Safe Online Shopping

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SINGAPORE /PRNewswire/ — Online shopping is big business these days, with more and more consumers across the world turning to the World Wide Web to purchase goods. This is especially true in countries like Singapore, Vietnam, Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, India and the Philippines where ecommerce is really taking hold over the way people shop.

Numerous ecommerce platforms such as Zalora, Lazada, Redmart, Carousell, Qoo10, Luxola, HipVan and countless others have popped up all over the Asia, allowing users to buy and sell practically any type of product or service online. It of course helps that consumers in Asia seem to have an insatiable appetite for online shopping. In fact, with a turnover of $567.3 billion, Asia is the largest ecommerce region in the world.

“The growth of e-commerce has caught the attention of cybercriminals who are keen to exploit individuals benefitting from the convenience, affordability and choice that makes the internet such a compelling place to be,” commented Parvinder Walia, Sales & Marketing Director APAC, ESET. “As the season of giving approaches, consumers should remain vigilant and take precautionary measures in order to ensure that this time of celebration isn’t marred by a cyberattack.”

With that in mind and conscious that the Christmas season is about to get underway, ESET has shared five top tips on how to stay safe and secure when shopping online.

1.       Stick with trusted brands that have a strong reputation

Sticking with popular brands is as good as any advice when shopping online. Not only do you know what you’re getting by way of quality and price, but you can also feel more confident that these well-established names have in place robust security measures. However, be careful, as fraudsters often create fake and professional looking websites to lure in unsuspecting victims. Their efforts can be quite remarkable, as researchers at Google and the University of San Diego found last year. They observed how high-quality phishing sites are so effective that they have a 45 percent success rate at extracting data. For average-looking fakes, that figure drops down to 14 percent.

2.       Use credit cards and secure payment services instead of debit cards

As a general rule, credit cards, in comparison to debit cards, offer consumers additional protection when shopping online. The main advantage of the latter is that a credit card account is in no way linked to whatever funds you actually own. And that’s not all — there are other benefits too. Unlike debit cards, credit cards often have a limit on the monetary amount you will be responsible for paying if your information is stolen and used by someone else.

Likewise, using secure online payment services, like that offered by PayPal, are advisable. The advantage with these providers is that they act as a kind of middleman, whereby you deliver payment to them — i.e. PayPal — and they then pass this onto the retailer. Your bank details always remain unseen.

3.       Look out for the https URL and the padlock symbol

https, which was developed by Netscape, is an online safety protocol that encrypts information so that data can be kept private and protected. In most cases, the text in the URL is preceded by a padlock symbol (if this is missing, the website should be treated with caution). The ‘s’ in https incidentally, stands for secure. Websites that use https are safe because they utilise SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) to encrypt any information that is distributed online, such as your credit card details.

4.       Be wary of dodgy offers that are too good to be true

We have all come across a legitimately unbelievable offer and jumped on it with enthusiasm, glad to have been afforded the opportunity to purchase something at a fraction of its true cost. But that is rare. The old adage of “if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is” should inform how you shop online — caution is required because there are plenty of scams looking to hook you in with tempting offers. It is advisable to be doubly vigilant during holiday seasons, like Christmas, where there does tend to be a lot of amazing and genuine offers. The more reliable the brand and the more secure the URL, the more likely it is that it’s authentic. If not, then walk away.

5.       Opt for your mobile phone network over public Wi-Fi

Public Wi-Fi is unquestionably something we as consumers now expect. From shops to cafes to restaurants, being able to access the internet with little or no cost is in tune with our connected way of living.

However, when it comes to buying online, all the convenience that comes with public Wi-Fi can be overshadowed by the many risks that are associated with this service. You’d be surprised at how unsecure many hotspots actually are and how easy they are to attack. There are ample solutions to resolving the vulnerabilities associated with public Wi-Fi, but, in general, when out and about, opt to use data provided by your network provider when going online. If you must use public Wi-Fi, then make sure to use one that’s secured and follow some of these other simple tips too.

 

About ESET

Since 1987, ESET® has been developing award-winning security software that now helps over 100 million users to Enjoy Safer Technology. Its broad security product portfolio covers all popular platforms and provides businesses and consumers around the world with the perfect balance of performance and proactive protection. The company has a global sales network covering 180 countries, and regional offices in Bratislava, San Diego, Singapore andBuenos Aires. For more information visit www.eset.com or follow us on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter.

Source: ESET

Written by asiafreshnews

December 16, 2015 at 12:03 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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