Rapid technological changes make it easier than ever to make digital payments for all our purchases without carrying cash around. We can pay at the register with the swipe of our credit cards, or even a simple tap from our smartphone or smartwatch allows for payment processing, but are we more susceptible to fraud when we use digital forms of payment?
Potential risks regarding digital payments
To help you understand the potential risks regarding various payment methods currently available to us and ways to avoid them, Marcus Arcabascio, financial expert and founder of banking and credit sites Bank-Locations and Customer Service Number shared some valuable tips on the riskiest payment methods and how to steer clear.
Our debit cards directly link to our bank accounts, accessing our checking and savings accounts. When we use debit cards to make purchases, we risk potential criminals accessing our card information and draining our accounts.
“If you absolutely must use your debit card, make sure that you use the chip instead of the credit card magnetic strip,” says Marcus.
The chip creates a unique transaction code every time it is used, but criminals can easily copy the information on the magnetic strip.
Saved credit card information
When you save your credit card information in your favourite online stores, you run the risk of security breaches. The data is kept for you and in the stores’ database to make checkout more accessible and faster. If their security is compromised, your credit card information is at risk.
“If you decide to leave your credit card information saved online, create a strong and unique password that makes it harder for others to gain access. Enable two-factor authorization to add an extra layer of security for your credit cards,” suggests Marcus.
Remember to always check your credit card statements for any fraudulent activity.
Apple Pay and Google Pay
Apple Pay and Google Pay are generally safe because they use tokenization, which creates a unique code each time a purchase is made. On top of that, your actual credit card number is never shared with the store, ensuring that it is kept secure, for the most part that is.
“Apple Pay and Google Pay secure a lot of your essential personal information, including credit card numbers. This places your information at risk for cyber security attacks,” says Marcus.
To make it more difficult for hackers to access your information, enable a passcode or touch ID to protect your information if you lose your device. Avoid clicking on suspicious emails or links, and limit access to your device when it is locked.
Storing information on phones or computers
Saving your payment information on your device is convenient but increases your risk of fraud. Your payment information is easily accessed if your device is lost, stolen, or hacked.
To enhance the security of your stored information, regularly update your browser and devices to ensure that you have the latest security protections on your devices.
The best way to make payments online is to use your credit card. Using digital payment methods is safe, so long as you take the proper precautions to enhance the security surrounding them.
Whenever you have the option to use cash, you can’t go wrong with that. It isn’t linked to any personal information, and you don’t have to worry about anyone hacking into your bank account when you use it.
Related article: Digital payments are rising in ASEAN but profits remain elusive