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Online shopping safety: tips to keep you safe

Dan Burt

Written by Dan Burt, lead cyber security specialist

Everyone loves a bargain, but no one wants to get more (or less) than they bargained for.

The internet can be a bit like the wild west at times, so check out these top tips to help keep you safe this shopping season!

Beware of copycat websites
Copycat websites will charge a fee for services that would have been cheaper or even free via the official site. They are also a cyber criminal's favourite way to try and part you from your hard earned cash. Keep an eye out for these; they are a dead giveaway that something isn’t right.

Before entering your details on a website, ensure the web address starts with “https://” and that there’s a padlock in the address bar. This doesn’t guarantee the website is safe, but it means criminals can’t eavesdrop and steal your information!

Credit Cards
If a fraudulent purchase is made on your credit card, it’s easier to get your money back than you think. This is because credit cards are backed by stronger laws than debit cards. This is best on purchases over £100.

Does the deal seem too good?
Does it seem like the bargain of a lifetime? That’s the idea! Criminals use deals like this to tempt you into entering your card details into their websites. Sometimes they will even take money from you and never send you the products.

Lookout for spam emails
Criminals will flood you with emails that direct you to websites and services to try and exploit all of these things above.

Are you a victim of cyber crime?

Have you bought something online, and it doesn’t feel right? Get in touch with Action fraud and your bank for help.

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