Almost 19.5 million people, 55.2% of the population between 16 and 74 years old, have bought online in the last three months, according to a survey by the INE. A very revealing fact that once again puts on the table the importance of all citizens adopting good habits and learning to buy online, avoiding the main risks we can find.

The most frequent problems that online buyers have encountered in the last three months have been: 

  1. 28.7% have experienced delivery delays.  
  2. 16.4% have experienced difficulties using the website or technical failures during payment or order. 
  3. 15.1% have encountered problems in finding information on legal rights or guarantees. 

Some 11.3 million people consider themselves ‘non-online shoppers’ and express as main reasons:

  1. Prefer to buy in person at a physical store (83%).
  2. They do not accept online because they are concerned about payment security and privacy (46%).
  3. They acknowledge that they do not have sufficient skill or knowledge to do so (44.2%). 

After briefly analyzing the survey, it is shown that more and more people buy online. However, we must be careful and pay close attention, mainly for two reasons:

Cybercriminals are constantly developing new deception strategies so that users become victims of fraud. For example, they create fraudulent online sales pages with non-existent products, impersonate the identity of well-known stores or brands, etc.

Some web pages do not provide the necessary mechanisms for user procedures to be secure: they do not include secure payment methods, they do not provide contact information, and they do not detail the policies or conditions of the sales process (returns, privacy, security, etc.). 

So what can you do to make your online purchases safe? Here are some guidelines:

Analyze the emails you receive offering promotions and ensure that it is the official brand that is sending it before clicking on a link or downloading attachments. 

Your data is important. Check that the page has a security and privacy section where it explains what data they collect and how they use it.

Before making a transaction, check that the page is secure, checking that the address begins with ‘ HTTPS ‘ and has a security certificate and trust seal.

Do not trust if the page does not have legal notice with information about the company, conditions of sale, returns, and claims, among other things.

Look for information about the store’s reputation through the ratings of other users.

Please pay attention to the store’s appearance; its design is homogeneous, the images have quality, and all the sections are complete and well written.

Check that the forms of payment accepted are consistent with your interests and insurance.

Be suspicious if prices are markedly below market or if all products are the same price.

If you are going to receive the package at home, make sure of the shipping status by checking the website where you bought the product and the official website of the courier company with the assigned tracking number.

If you have doubts, check the information before buying with trusted third parties, and if you still do not see it clearly, look for an alternative option to make your purchases, since as the saying goes: ‘prevention is better than cure.


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