Shopping over the Internet - convenient or risky?

Internet shopping is certainly a great convenience. From cosmetics to a plasma TV - the internet offers almost anything. Besides choice and luxury of shopping from home on the internet the prices are often lower. The question that bothers most buyers is security. Although fraud when buying online is not common, users should be well informed about the internet store where they shop.

There are many ways to investigate whether an online store is secure or not.


Internet shopping is certainly a great convenience. From cosmetics to a plasma TV - the internet offers almost anything. Besides choice and luxury of shopping from home on the internet the prices are often lower. The question that bothers most buyers is security. Although fraud when buying online is not common, users should be well informed about the internet store where they shop.

There are many ways to investigate whether an online store is secure or not.

There are many international online stores which are known and which you can safely trust - such as Amazon's. It is estimated that online shopping in France, Austria and the Nordic countries is somewhat secure, but there are cases of fraud. If you purchase from stores outside Europe, you should be familiar.

You like an online store, so check it out on Google. Read the opinions of other users on the forums. Here you can find useful information about a specific store. If there are many "burned" and deceived customers you will surely find something on the topic. A General rule - do not look just for a low price. Almost always too low price of any product poses a risk of fraud.

You should research methods of payment. Smaller shops, for example, often send goods ordered after advance payment. This method, however, is not favored by most users. Bulgaria still prefers payment upon delivery of the product. If the store is foreign, most likely you will have to pay in advance. In this case, request an invoice in advance. A very secure payment system offers PayPal. But it is not used by all online stores.

Be particularly careful with transfers through Western Union. This is not a bad system, but it is not suitable for online shopping. This is because the recipient of the money is anonymous after money has been sent, it can not be claimed back. This is most easily done through PayPal, but no guarantees there. Bank transfers are also possible, but not always. The safest way to pay is still paying for shipping when you order.

Often when shopping online you need to give personal information such as address, ID number, telephone and even a credit card number. In such cases, you have to see if there is a system to protect the site.

There are several security systems. All information and encode most e-commerce sites have such a system. One of them is SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or protection system at several levels. You may notice presence if the navigation bar of the web browser you get a character - the lock or key. Typically, the web address of such sites begins with https://.

This method gives you extra safety because the merchant never sees banking information and intermediary stores information only for the period of the transfer.

When shopping online frequently check your bank account and the availability of credit card. So the chance to respond to irregularities will be much larger. If you notice that they withdraw money without your knowledge, contact the police immediately.

Within the European Union there are some measures to protect consumers in the event of fraudulent credit card. First, you are not personally responsible for the way of dealing with your credit card if you are not physically present or have been identified by an electronic time of the transfer. The cardholder is the one who should be identified and not the card itself.

To allow for identification, use a system for electronic signature, for example, secret magnetic code on your card. This information is encrypted and is supposed to guarantee and provides the same advantages as manually signed.

In case of misuse of credit cards or any other electronic transfer of funds, in theory you can request cancellation of the payment. The company that issued your credit card or company remittance is obliged to reimburse the sums paid you as soon as possible. In such cases, inform the participating company.

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