PANGASINAN, August 31 (PIA) — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) here has issued online shopping security tips to protect the hard-earned money of consumers from scammers and bogus sellers.
DTI Provincial Director Peter Mangabat noted that the advent of technology has given consumers the capacity to instantly purchase goods and services online and have them delivered at their doorstep for convenience.
With so much scammers and unscrupulous sellers around, Mangabat shared some tips to protect the buying public and make sure that their online transactions are being done properly.
He said buyers should transact with a reputable website, merchant or seller.
“Check the merchant’s web address or URL (Uniform Resource Locator) for correctness. Make sure that it is the merchant’s real website. Be careful in misspelling the address to avoid being misdirected to a bogus merchant’s website,” he told the Philippine Information Agency.
For safety, consumers should always check the URL or website and take note of the lock icon in the address bar to confirm legitimacy of the website, he said.
He added that secured URLs usually start with “https://” or Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure, instead of just “http://”.
The next tip, he said, is to “only give required information” for the purchase as providing unnecessary data will enable hackers to access a buyer’s account.
“Use hard-to-guess passwords that cannot be easily guessed to secure your account and keep it confidential. It is best to use a combination of letters, numbers, and characters in creating your password,” the Provincial Director said.
He also advised consumers to ignore huge discounts, or deals that are “too-good-to-be-true.”
“Contact the website or the merchant to validate the offer. If the deal seems unrealistic, it is more likely a scam,” he said, adding that bogus sellers who have received the payment, usually disappear, taking away the cash.
Further, Mangabat said online shoppers should read and understand the terms, conditions and payment methods, and ensure that online payment is secure and reliable.
Finally, as in every online accounts, it is highly advised that owners “log-out their accounts after every transaction.”
While DTI makes sure that the consumers are protected, empowering consumers through information is key to help consumers avoid being victimized by scammers. (JNPD/AMB/PIA-1, Pangasinan)
Source: PIA Feed