Buy Safe Pay Safe: How to shop safely
Online shoppers are warned to be cautious of scammers in the lead-up to Christmas and Black Friday sales this year.
More businesses have been set up online which increases the risk of fraudsters who use the anonymous nature of the internet to rip off consumers or retailers.
An Garda Síochána are supporting Europol in a media campaign to promote safe online shopping to customers and to help retailers avoid fraudsters online.
Gardaí advise the following if you plan to online shop this winter:
Ensure you understand the risks involved when online shopping. It is important to research where you're buying; try to use brands and shops that are familiar to you.
Check to ensure the website is genuine, do not click links that are not familiar, and do not look trustworthy. It is recommended to type in the website yourself.
Always check the reviews left by previous customers which will allow greater insight into the website you're buying from and the product you intend to purchase.
Be careful how you pay. It is important to always use the website's recommended payment site. If there is none available, use credit cards when purchasing as most cards have a strong customer protection policy.
Save all documents related to online purchases. Keep email receipts or any notifications issued to you after the sale has been completed.
If a purchase is not made, do not leave identity or card details behind.
Never send card details by email, text, or other messaging methods.
Don’t send money to someone you don’t know.
For the Online Retailer / eCommerce Merchant
Know your product.
Know your customer.
Establish a safe means of payment.
Use a reliable delivery service.
Detective Chief Superintendent Lordan of the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau welcomes this Europol initiative.
"I would urge consumers and businesses to be extra careful when conducting online transactions and pay heed to the valuable advice offered on the Europol website to help avoid the many pitfalls involved." he added.
Further information and additional advice can be offered here
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