Shopping safely online? Ireland’s savvy shoppers are leading the way
Keeping payments safe is a priority for Visa
It is reassuring to know that when you pay with Visa, your payments are secure and protected
Life as we knew it has changed utterly over the past year, leading to many of us changing our usual routines. From working from home to virtual quizzes with friends, we have swapped old habits for new, and it’s likely that many of these habits will stay with us long after our communities return to a “new” or reimagined normal.
One of the most noticeable changes to our behaviour has been how we shop. This year more of us ventured online for everyday purchases, with 52 per cent of Irish consumers surveyed by Visa saying they are shopping online more often since the start of the pandemic.*
Keeping your payments secure
As more of us rely on online shopping, keeping our finances and personal details safe has become even more important. So it is reassuring to know that when you pay with Visa, your payments are secure and protected. Working with your bank, Visa uses multiple layers of security to prevent fraud and protect your data; more importantly, they can help you get your money back if someone uses your card without your permission.
Fashion and lifestyle blogger Louise Cooney is no stranger to online shopping and knows a thing or two about keeping her payments, and data, safe.
“I make a mental checklist of what I need to do before I click to pay, so paying safely has become second nature,” says the Limerick native. “One thing I always do is check that a website starts with HTTPS and not just HTTP. The ‘s’ indicates it’s a secure connection, which can be very easy to miss if you don’t know to look out for it.”
Having moved into a new apartment in Dublin recently, Cooney has been shopping online more than usual to create a living space that she loves. “It’s so convenient to be able to shop on the go and is another way I can support the local businesses I've missed during lockdown. Still, I’m always conscious about keeping my details and finances safe when I buy online.
“I like to pay with my Visa card, as I know there are protections in place so that I could get my money back if there are any unauthorised or fraudulent charges on my account. I’ve also developed a new habit of checking my bank account online or through my mobile app every couple of days, just to make sure there’s nothing going through that I don’t recognise. It’s a simple thing we can all do.”
Cooney is not alone. 51 per cent of those surveyed in Ireland keep a regular eye on their online transactions following the rise in online shopping.*
There are simple things you can do to give yourself that extra sense of security. Dominic White, Visa’s acting country manager, Ireland, advises being particularly careful of unsolicited and suspicious emails or phone calls.
“We work closely with banks across Ireland to keep consumers’ details safe and thankfully, card fraud is rare," he says. “However, there are things we can all be aware of to prevent fraud. One important detail to note is that Visa or your bank will never contact you out of the blue and ask for personal information like your account number, username or email. So, if in doubt, hang up the phone, delete the email and avoid clicking on any links or downloading any files.”
The personal touch
Writer and broadcaster Barbara Scully is a fan of online shopping and has used it whenever possible over the past year. “What I love about online shopping is that not only can I support my local restaurants and shops when their doors are closed, but I can also get some amazing things from small businesses in places such as Donegal, Kerry and Waterford that I might never have the opportunity to visit in person.”
I love shopping online, but I also love that I have the power to keep safe online
Scully loves the personal touch that accompanies many local deliveries: “The joy of a package arriving to the house, often with beautiful wrapping and a thank you, is just fantastic.” But she is not someone who likes to rush into a purchase, making her one of Ireland’s many savvy online shoppers. “It’s important to give yourself time to shop safely. I always check out a company or brand’s online reviews and I’m now in the habit of changing my passwords regularly.”
Keeping payments safe is a priority for Visa, and the good news is that not only does Visa help protect you if a purchase goes wrong, it also protects you from being left out of pocket as a result of fraud or scams with its Zero Liability Policy.
Louise Cooney says that knowing her payments are protected allows her to shop online with confidence. (Her most recent internet purchase, she confides, is some funky outdoor furniture.) “I love shopping online, but I also love that I have the power to keep safe online. Knowing that Visa and my bank are working behind the scenes lets me get on with the important business of retail therapy, and that’s how online shopping should be.”
For more tips on savvy and safe shopping online, check out How to Swipe Up Smart 5 Top Tips from Louise Cooney | Visa.
*Research commissioned by Visa and conducted by Red C with 1,004 nationally representative adults in Ireland in December 2020.
Barbara Scully and Louise Cooney were remunerated for their collaboration on Visa’s safer shopping online initiative (May 2021).