Ensuring Secure Online Purchases: A Comprehensive Guide for 2023

Ensuring Secure Online Purchases: A Comprehensive Guide for 2023
Published in : 14 Nov 2023

Ensuring Secure Online Purchases: A Comprehensive Guide for 2023

In 2023, over 41 million people in France made at least one purchase online, indicating a substantial number of online shoppers. Out of these, around 17 million individuals made their purchases directly from their smartphones, highlighting the growing popularity of mobile commerce. It is worth noting that France has an estimated 46 million Internet users, suggesting that a significant portion of the population engages in online shopping.

However, despite the significant number of online shoppers, there are still nearly 5 million individuals in France who have never purchased on the internet. This means that there is a segment of the population that has yet to embrace online shopping and prefers more traditional purchasing methods.

Overall, these figures demonstrate the widespread adoption of online shopping in France but also underline the presence of a considerable number of people who have yet to venture into e-commerce.

 

Guarding Against Credit Card Hacking: Best Practices for Online Security

The most prevalent concern among individuals is the possibility of their credit cards being compromised through hacking. Contrary to popular belief, the primary risk of theft or hacking arises not from entering one's bank details but rather from website hacking. Approximately 90% of bank identifier thefts occur through direct hacking of websites. However, it is important to note that this issue pertains to only around 30 to 40% of websites, and the success rate of these attacks is not guaranteed.

Our initial recommendation is to refrain from allowing the website to store your bank details. It is important to ensure that you do not select the option to "Save my card," and if prompted by the merchant site, avoid responding with a "yes." Opting for manual entry of your card information for each purchase while receiving confirmation from your banking application provides an added layer of security.

Beyond the Padlock: Debunking Website Security Myths

Let us promptly refute a commonly held notion: NO, the mere presence of a padlock and the HTTPS symbol does not ensure flawless security. A website can exhibit a padlock even without being trustworthy. Similarly, a reputable site can showcase the HTTPS symbol and still fall victim to more advanced hacking techniques.

Please exercise caution and refrain from placing blind trust in the presence of these elements mentioned above.

Enhancing Online Security: The Importance of Two-Factor Authentication

Double authentication is a technique enabling the association of a connection with a secondary method of verification to ensure that the connection request is legitimate. This can be achieved by entering the conventional password on the website, followed by entering a code received via SMS or clicking on a link provided through email, or even by performing an unlock action on your smartphone.

In the field of cybersecurity, it is essential to establish strong security measures such as double authentication to protect sensitive information. As we examine the complexities of safe online practices, it is important to consider the fundamental importance of web encryption. Web encryption serves as a crucial element in strengthening digital interactions, guaranteeing that data remains secure and intact during the authentication process. To gain a deeper understanding of how encryption significantly enhances online security, take a closer look at our comprehensive analysis of 'Web Encryption.' This informative article provides insights into the mechanisms supporting secure connections and the encryption protocols that are vital for a robust cybersecurity approach.

Crafting a Robust Password: A Crucial Step in Online Security

In general, irrespective of the website, a robust password serves as an effective deterrent against numerous instances of piracy. Here are the ultimate recommendations:

  • 12 characters minimum
  • letters
  • Figures
  • Uppercase
  • Lowercase
  • Special characters

 

Harnessing Your Bank's Advanced Security: A Two-Factor Control Method

Your bank provides a sophisticated security system. It is commonly referred to as SecuriPass at Crédit Agricole, Secur'Pass at Caisse d'Epargne and Banque Populaire, or Confirmation Mobile at CIC/Crédit Mutuel.

This is a two-factor control method. The validation of a purchase can only occur when the user takes action on their smartphone or the banking application.

Smart Shopping: Navigating Price Comparisons Safely Online

There are numerous price comparison platforms available on the Internet, enabling users to find great deals on various websites, including those that may need to be more well-known to the general public. Nevertheless, it is important to bear in mind that purchasing from lesser-known sites poses additional risks. Such sites may lack adequate security measures, present misleading "fake bargains," or offer complex after-sales services.

We strongly recommend exercising caution when utilizing comparators. It is important to note that this does not imply avoiding them altogether. Rather, it is advisable to select reputable ones, taking into consideration that numerous comparators operate through paid partnerships, favoring those who offer substantial commissions.

Decoding Website 'Celebrity': How Authority Impacts Security

An essential factor contributing to the exceptionalism of only a handful of merchant sites is the "celebrity" status of the e-commerce platform, also referred to as its "authority." The greater familiarity it enjoys among the general public, the more robust its security measures tend to be. Although not flawless, these measures are of a significantly elevated standard.

If you wish to purchase on an unfamiliar website, simply direct your attention to the bottom of the webpage, where you will typically find essential links such as "Legal Notices" and "General Conditions of Sale" (mandatory for merchant sites). Within these sections, you will discover vital information such as the company's headquarters address, SIRET number, and details about the responsible individual. This data enables you to validate the merchant's credibility by cross-referencing it with official sources.

Diversifying Payment Methods: Safeguarding Transactions Beyond Credit Cards

Did you know that there are alternative methods of payment available besides using a bank card? These options not only protect your card details but also provide you with additional services.

We are not discussing virtual currencies like Bitcoin; instead, we are referring to solutions commonly provided by banks, such as the e-Carte Bleue.

The e-Carte Bleue, offered by Visa, is a system that provides a secure and convenient way to make online transactions. Functioning as a virtual bank card, it ensures the confidentiality of sensitive information. By generating a unique number for each transaction, the service enables users to make single purchases for specific amounts, enhancing the security and control of online payments.

With this system, there are no unwelcome surprises. The rate of piracy is exceptionally low, decreasing from 65% (classic CB) to a mere 0.07% (e-Carte Bleue).

We may also mention PayPal, which fulfills the vital role of serving as an intermediary between the merchant website and your bank. Alternatively, there is Paylib, a reliable solution that eliminates the need for an intermediary while ensuring the security of transactions through single payments without revealing sensitive information.

Navigating Tempting Offers: How to Spot Scams in Online Deals

In numerous instances, alluring propositions conceal unforeseen developments. Whether positive or negative, they present an opportunity to enroll in a recurring payment service, subscribe to a newsletter, or decline the sought-after product.

It will be crucial to monitor the platforms where the offer is being presented diligently. In instances where the proposal appears excessively enticing, there is a possibility of it being a scam. Exercise caution and consider utilizing websites that specialize in showcasing reliable and beneficial deals, such as Dealabs.

The Power of Opinions: Leveraging Reviews for Informed Online Purchases

On the Internet, it is standard practice to seek out opinions about various subjects, be it a product or the reputation of a website. This applies to the process of purchasing as well. One can easily conduct a swift search to locate reviews about a specific website.

The ideal scenario is not to have 100% positive opinions, as that may raise suspicions of it being a scam. However, if there is a rating between 4 and 4.5 out of 5, it signifies a highly commendable reputation.

In this domain, platforms such as TrustPilot, Google My Business, or even the Yellow Pages serve as exemplary indicators.

Securing Your Digital Realm: A User's Responsibility in Online Shopping

Overall, if the website is not specifically targeted, it is the user who must take responsibility for their security. There is no better way than to focus on the device through which the user connects and exploit it as a means to obtain valuable information.

Common sense dictates that users should, at the very least, ensure the installation and regular updating of their anti-virus software, browser, and operating system.

Connections to the websites on which he purchases must be safeguarded with a robust password. The password should be 12 characters in length and consist of a combination of letters, numbers, special characters, and both uppercase and lowercase letters. Additionally, double authentication should be implemented, which can be accomplished through the use of a one-time code or by acting on another device.

Proceed with Caution: Online Shopping and Public Wi-Fi Networks

When connecting to third-party locations, such as cafes, McDonald's restaurants, hotels, or public garden Wi-Fi networks, it is highly advisable to refrain from making purchases or engaging in sensitive activities. It is recommended to engage in peaceful internet browsing solely. These networks do not guarantee security, and the verification methods employed need to be more complex.

Our recommendation, therefore, is to refrain from connecting to merchant sites while using this type of "open" network.

Adapting to New Regulations: Understanding Consumer Protections in E-Commerce

The law adjusts in response to evolving consumer purchasing patterns. Currently, there are 15 obligations in place to govern the operations of e-commerce platforms, marking a significant increase from the previous number of 6 regulations.

Among the new rules implemented, there are several that aim to provide enhanced protection for consumers. Individuals must be aware of the existence of these rules.

  • Guarantee of conformity and hidden defects
  • Guarantee and termination conditions
  • Previous prices (in case of promotion)
  • Method of payment and delivery
  • Withdrawal form

One of the notable aspects is the presence of the withdrawal form, a compulsory display that enables you to exercise your right to withdraw. This right signifies the seller's obligation to reimburse you for the goods or services you have ordered. It is important to note that this right can be exercised within a timeframe of 14 days from the date of receiving the goods.

Making Informed Choices: A Guide to Successful Online Purchases in 2023

Depending on your buyer profile, it is important to carefully consider your options before placing an order. Take into account the advantages and disadvantages, as well as the credibility and longevity of the website.

Ask yourself if the seller has a reputable track record and has been in business for a substantial period. Additionally, consider whether the item you are interested in purchasing can be found locally. Evaluate the security measures and guarantees provided by the website, and take note of any positive reviews it may have received.

To ensure a smooth experience for your initial online purchase, it is recommended to seek assistance from a skilled professional within the Mon Assistant Numérique network. These experts will provide guidance and insightful explanations regarding the associated risks.

 

Frequently Asked Questions?

Is it safe to store my credit card details on websites?

While it is a widespread practice to store card details for the sake of convenience, it is advisable to refrain from doing so in the interest of safety. The predominant risk of card theft arises from website hacking, accounting for approximately 90% of cases. It is prudent to avoid selecting the option to "Save my card" and instead manually enter the required details for every purchase. This approach adds a layer of security, which is further validated by your banking application.

Do padlocks and HTTPS symbols guarantee a secure website?

No, these symbols do not guarantee perfect security. Even if a site displays these symbols, it does not automatically mean that it is trustworthy. It is crucial to exercise caution and not unthinkingly place trust in these symbols alone. It is important to verify the credibility of the website through additional methods and not solely rely on the presence of padlocks or HTTPS.

What is two-factor authentication, and how does it enhance online security?

Two-factor authentication incorporates an additional verification step to enhance security. Once you've entered your password, you must confirm your identity through SMS, email, or an action on your smartphone. This additional layer of verification guarantees authenticity and greatly enhances the security of your account.

How can I create a strong and secure password for online shopping?

Craft a strong password by incorporating a minimum of 12 characters, which should consist of a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters. Developing a password with these specifications serves as a crucial preventive measure against potential online security breaches across all websites.

What alternative payment methods provide additional security for online transactions?

Consider using secure alternatives such as e-Carte Bleue, PayPal, or Paylib. These methods safeguard your card information and provide supplementary services, guaranteeing a more secure and reliable online payment experience.

How can I verify the credibility of an unfamiliar website before making a purchase?

Please refer to the bottom of the webpage for important links, such as "Legal Notices" and "General Conditions of Sale." Locate vital information, including the company's address, SIRET number, and responsible individual. It is recommended to verify the credibility of the website by cross-referencing this information with official sources.

What precautions should I take when using public Wi-Fi for online shopping?

Avoid making purchases or engaging in sensitive activities on public Wi-Fi networks due to their insufficient security measures. It is advisable to refrain from connecting to merchant sites while using open networks to minimize the possibility of unauthorized access to your personal information.

What are the new regulations governing e-commerce platforms, and how do they protect consumers?

New regulations encompass provisions about a multitude of crucial aspects, namely guarantees of conformity, hidden defects, termination conditions, previous prices, method of payment and delivery, as well as withdrawal forms. The primary objective behind these regulations is to bolster consumer protection by affording buyers with well-defined entitlements. One such noteworthy right is the provision of a comprehensive 14-day withdrawal period.

How can I assess the credibility of an online seller and the products they offer?

Evaluate the credibility and longevity of an online seller by thoroughly examining customer reviews and the pertinent information outlined in "Legal Notices" and "General Conditions of Sale." Making well-informed decisions based on reliable information is crucial to ensuring a safe and secure online shopping experience.