How much do you and your family shop online?
Shopping online can be really convenient, bringing many more products to your door than you could get from your local shops. It is particularly useful if you live far away from a town, are ill, work irregular hours, or for some other reason can’t/don’t want to travel to shops when they are open – but have you considered how safe it is?
Online shopping can lead to problems if the site or method you’re using to make your purchase is not secure. As a customer, you could have your payment details or identity stolen or find yourself shopping on a fraudulent site. As a business, you need to try and make sure your customers are genuine, paying with their own money (not someone else’s), and that the goods will reach them without the customer claiming they were lost or damaged in transit and demanding a refund.
In the last 10 years, banks and business have lost millions of pounds due to online fraud.
Looking at the graph of online card fraud losses you can see a dramatic increase in online card fraud between 2002 and 2008 as the internet became more popular and more retail establishments set up online shops. Even though the popularity of online shopping has continued to grow since 2008, losses due to card fraud have decreased from the 2008 peak, primarily due to increased security measures, such as Verified by Visa, MasterCard SecureCode and American Express SafeKey.
Compare online card fraud losses with card fraud losses in traditional face-to-face retail environments. Card fraud in high-street shopping has decreased since 2004 as chip and PIN verification has made lost or stolen cards much harder to use – providing your PIN isn’t something obvious, like your birthdate!
Although the banks have introduced new security measures to try and reduce card fraud, there are ways that individuals and business can protect themselves. For example, always select extra security measures when they are available, choose complicated and unique passwords for each account and never share passwords, or write them on bits of paper next to your bankcard, computer etc.
Now imagine you are starting an online business:
- What type of business would you start?
- What are the benefits of running a business online?
- What problems could you face from operating online?
Banking On Business Online looks at the some of the issues and benefits of running businesses online and face-to-face.