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Home > Business > Special

How to check online shopping frauds

Rajendra Palande | December 22, 2005

E-commerce is catching on in India. Online shopping has spread to nearly 2,000 towns and cities. But most prefer to pay cash on delivery. It is the scare of becoming victims of credit/debit card frauds that prevents most online shoppers from paying electronically.

Despite the fear of fraud, some do make payments online. And for those indulging in online shopping from across the borders, the option of paying cash on delivery does not exist. They have no option but to use their card for pay for their online purchase.

Visa has reported a 71 per cent growth in online spending by its cardholders in Asia-Pacific region at e-commerce merchants outside their home countries in the quarter ended September 2005. The cross-border purchases made exceeded $377 million during the period.

"e" is the buzz of our times. And the fear of frauds will not keep many from making payments online. So the only way to protect oneself from frauds is to strictly follow certain do's and don't's.

The first and foremost, as Visa says, is to use a secure web browser. Online shoppers must look for an "s" after "http" in the web page address or URL. The "s" is an indicator that certain security features are in place.

For extra peace of mind when making purchases, says Visa, compare products and prices between shops for the best price and quality and also check delivery and return policies. As part of an initiative to combat fraud, Visa is urging online shoppers to protect themselves by signing up for "Verified by Visa".

The payment solutions company says with internet shopping increasing in popularity, it is more important than ever for consumers to protect themselves against online card fraud.

Verified by Visa is a password protected service that verifies a cardholder's identity during an online transaction. It helps to provide consumers and retailers with the same level of confidence as enjoyed in a face-to-face transaction.

It is a free service to the cardholder that provides proof that a genuine cardholder and a genuine Visa retailer are taking part in the transaction.

Few tips for online shopping
  • Keep all passwords secret as is PIN (personal identification number) for ATM transactions
  • Protect your card details - provide details only when making purchases
  • Never send payment information via email. Most reputed merchant sites use encryption technologies that protect private data
  • Keep a record of the transaction
  • Review your monthly account statement thoroughly. Check all transactions, even the small ones, because criminals 'test' stolen accounts by buying inexpensive items first
  • Promptly notify your financial institution of any suspicious transaction or email
  • Looking for easy bargains on the Net? Click here!

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