Five tips to avoid scams when shopping online

Use biometrics and e-signatures when transacting online

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As consumers become more dependent on online shopping, fraudsters are coming up with new ways of tricking people into giving away their personal information and money. But that does not mean that people stop transacting online. There are ways to beat these fraudsters and remain safe while transacting online.

Here are some points that individuals must keep in mind while doing online transactions

Biometrics and password-less login

Passwords are hard to remember and are easily prone to hacking. Rather than changing passwords from time to time, take advantage of biometrics and e-signatures. This is something that falls on banks to ensure that they provide real-time protection to their customers and provide password-less authentication. These types of transactions prioritise security and reliability and eliminates the possibility of fraud to a great extent.

Adaptive multi-factor authentication

One can never be too cautious as cyber fraudsters employ and update their methods to defraud customers. To be safe, banks need to provide adaptive multi-factor authentication or risk-based authentication to their customers. This adds an extra layer of security to your transaction. So while a single password can be easily compromised, the hacker would still need to go through additional levels of authentication which makes your account even safer. Nowadays most banks offer adaptive multi-factor authentication to their customers which will add an extra level of security on a real-time basis for their transaction.

Never give remote access to your device

Remote access is when someone can access your screen from afar, without your knowledge and find an easy way to see all your data. In fact, they can use a screen recorder and get your email passwords, bank account login details and clone your phone. Fraudsters can even lock your phone and ask for ransom in order to release your data. This type of fraud is way common and to avoid this, always download apps from trusted sources. Never download keyloggers or from websites that you don’t trust.

Do not share your OTP online

The tremendous rise in online transactions has enabled fraudsters to invent schemes that establish credibility with a customer. More often, fraudsters pose as reputable citizens and quiz customers about non-existent impending payments. In such a situation, if a customer reveals their credit card pin details or OTP, trusting the fraudsters. That is the shortest route to getting defrauded. Always ensure to authenticate the identity of the person, do not shy away from asking questions and most of all never share confidential details. Be watchful of payment requests and spam warnings if the relevant information is not provided.

Be careful while using public WiFi

It is never recommended to use public/open WiFi or computers for banking transactions. Such open networks are prone to man-in-the-middle attacks which can steal confidential information of the user over the wire. Always resort to using your own device and network for transactions and keep checking your email in case a transaction you didn’t approve pops up. 

With online transactions being an inevitable part of our lives, we must safeguard ourselves from cyber frauds. Various banks in India have partnered with online cybersecurity companies to develop cutting-edge technologies to defeat fraudsters.

The writer is country manager, India and SAARC, OneSpan Inc

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First published on: 13-12-2022 at 14:24 IST
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