One of the scariest things that can happen online is to have the credentials of your payment methods stolen. Naturally, the more you shop online, the more you are at risk, and if your information does end up stolen, a hacker can use it to commit identity fraud or drain your bank account.
To prevent that from happening, there are several different things that you or your company can do that will further improve the level of your security.
Don’t Fall for Phishing Scams
The first thing that you should do is to start with the basics. To steal the data from your PC, a hacker needs to be extremely knowledgeable. However, most of the time, they just let you do the work for them. For example, they scam you into installing malicious software or inputting your login information on fake websites.
In other words, if you get a suspicious email from an unknown sender, don’t click any links. If you do, your PC might automatically start downloading malware to your computer while, in other cases, the link may take you to a clone site that looks exactly as the original but is only used to collect info from anyone that tries to log in.
Be Careful Where You Shop
Large companies use various ways to store your passwords safely on their websites, such as encrypting the password or using the hash function. This means that instead of creating a new account each time you come back to the website, you can simply log in with the existing one.
However, fishy websites, like the ones we already mentioned, exist only to steal your password which hackers can then use to potentially crack your other passwords or accounts. For that reason, make sure that you are leaving your credentials only on trustworthy websites that are protected with SSL encryption.
Make Use of Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication is an excellent way for you to protect yourself. If one of your accounts that has a payment method attached to it is hacked, hackers can potentially use that information to get to your other accounts. However, they won’t be able to do much with just knowing your password if they can’t log in.
In order to log into an account that’s protected with two-step authentication, a hacker would need access to your account but also to another device that is used to verify the login attempt on your first account.
For example, let’s say that you are trying to login to your bank account from your PC. Before you manage to do so, you will receive a text or a QR code on your phone that you will have to enter in order to gain access to your bank account, for example.
Simply put, it’s a password within a password that’s hidden on another device.
Use Third-Party E-Commerce Services
Instead of continuously having to worry about protecting your online data, you can simply take advantage of some of the most popular and most secure e-commerce businesses, such as Skrill, Neteller, PayPal, or Payoneer, for example. While a hacker may easily gain access to the information on your PC, it would be significantly harder for them to steal your data from the databases of these services.