Are online payment methods secure?
It is clear that online shopping is becoming more and more widespread among all of us. It saves us from having to travel to go shopping and we can do it at any time and moment of the day, whether it is near or on the other side of the world. How safe is it to pay via the Internet?
In general, online payment is very secure. Its security has improved a lot since its use became widespread. The need to offer security to buyers led to a lot of resources being invested to implement improved web security systems, and the result is that nowadays, buying a product over the Internet is as secure as or more secure than buying it in a physical store.
This security also depends, to a great extent, on the caution of the user himself. Some recommendations in this regard may be from having a good antivirus on the computer, to check security protocols and data encryption, or even buy in known or trusted places.
For users less experienced in online shopping there are several payment methods that provide added security, making the risk of buying online virtually zero. The most important thing in online sales is that the buyer can have the guarantee that no one can, as a result of a particular transaction, impersonate his personality in the future by making other purchases in his name and at his expense. There are several ways to pay for online purchases with added security:
- Payments with the PayPal system. PayPal is one of the most popular and secure platforms for making transactions. It is not only useful for making purchases, it can also be used to make money transactions between individuals. This platform acts as an electronic intermediary through the user’s credit or debit card, with the objective of ensuring confidentiality, both for the seller and the buyer, and offering the guarantee that the commercial transaction is carried out satisfactorily. This platform has the advantage that if the customer has any problem or does not receive the purchased item in the proper conditions, a claim can be made, which will initiate an investigation by the Paypal platform, which in most cases will end up giving the buyer the reason and returning the amount of the purchase.
- Cash on delivery payments. This system has been used for a long time in purchases that do not necessarily have to be online, although it is not very widespread in online shopping. It is the only means of payment used in e-commerce that involves the use of cash. By doing so, the only information the buyer has to provide to the seller is his personal data and postal address. It has the disadvantage that the buyer has to be present when the shipment arrives to make the corresponding payment, unless a notification arrives to pick up the item later at a delivery office. This system guarantees delivery of the item at the time of payment. From the seller’s point of view, this means of payment entails a delay in collecting the money for the item sold, and the need for physical collection of the money by the person making the delivery.
- Charges on bank account. Some platforms offer this type of payment, but it is not widely used in online commerce. In this case you buy what you need online and give your bank details, nowadays it is usually the IBAN number, and the seller makes the charge directly to the current account provided. It is usually used for periodic charges or subscriptions.
- Debit or credit cards. Debit or credit cards are the most popular means used in e-commerce. For the buyer it means, in the case of using his debit card, the immediate payment at the moment of making the transaction, or in the case of using his credit card, his deferred payment for the end, or in the surroundings, of the end of the month. For the seller, this means quick payment in exchange for a small commission deducted by the drawer’s bank from the amount to be charged for the sale of the item.
- Pay later. Some Internet platforms, in collaboration with financial institutions, advance the money for the purchase, which will be charged in monthly installments, generally charged to the debit or credit card, during the term chosen. These services act as intermediaries between the seller and the user and therefore no sensitive information is shared with third parties.
- Exclusive accounts linked to debit cards. This option is one of the safest that the buyer can use to protect his bank accounts. The user has to ask his bank for an exclusive account to make online purchases and request a debit card associated with this account. The buyer, every time he wants to purchase a product, will have to transfer the amount to be paid to the online seller, to this exclusive account, and then pay using the card linked to where he wants to make the online purchase. In this way, the user can be sure that, even if his card data is compromised, the bank account to which it is associated does not have a balance to make the corresponding payment.