Phishing attacks everywhere impersonating the identity of WHO or Social Security, false miracle products advertised on networks, malware lurking in attachments and email links … so you must defend yourself against cyber-scams and avoid scams when shopping online.
The pandemic has fueled the greed of criminals and Covid-19 itself serves as an excuse to hack devices, cheat through false advertising campaigns, request access to bank accounts with phishing schemes, or sell personal data in the dark virtual corridors of the Deep Web.
Cyber scams have multiplied: Bankia, Social Security, WHO … the identity of several has been supplanted to persuade thousands of digital victims, while Google has blocked 18 million daily emails of malware and phishing related to the coronavirus.
This fake social security email wants to steal your money
For its part, the Internet User Safety Office (OSI) has warned that since the beginning of the health crisis caused by the SARS-VOC-2, numerous fraudulent web pages have been detected that try to deceive users by selling mainly face masks. but also of other sanitary materials and articles. These never arrive or are counterfeits or different products.
To avoid falling into the clutches of fake e-commerce or not to be victims of a digital scam, NUpgrade provides some guidelines.
7 tips to avoid scams when shopping online
- Only go to legit shops for your online purchases: It is important that they have a secure protocol, so you should check if the web URL begins with https and is preceded by a padlock (in Google Chrome it is gray and in Microsoft Edge, white). Verify that the digital certificate of the web has not expired and that it has been issued for the site you are browsing. Please note that you will transfer personal information that must remain encrypted
- Secure payment methods: For maximum security, select cash on delivery or prepaid cards, which are not connected to any checking account or line of credit. Other recommended means are PayPal, Apple Pay, or Samsung Pay. In the specific case of PayPal, if you do not receive the product or it is different from the original, you will be refunded the purchase amount.
- Be wary of large discounts: Offers are common commercial claims, widely used by fraudulent websites to encourage your impulsive purchase and awaken your attention. If the price of a product is suspiciously low, you suspect fraud.
- Verify the electronic commerce data: The online store must have available the business name of the owner of the web, his CIF or NIF and his contact details. To do this, go to the bottom of the web, where the legal notice is. If the domain is free, it lacks customer service channels and its social networks are absent from activity, extreme caution.
- Notice in the visual aspect: A poorly constructed and unattractive website may be due to being done in a hurry or imitating the design of an official website. If the website is not fully operational and there are links that do not lead anywhere, but the payment forms work or, even, the texts are poorly written, bad business.
- Review other users’ evaluations: A simple Internet search by Googling the name or going to the networks will solve your doubts. If you find negative information or about scams and frauds or even there is no trace of the brand or electronic commerce on the web, your alarm will go off.