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With the number of Australians shopping online predicted to break records this holiday season, it’s important to know the simple ways you can protect yourself while still benefiting from the value and convenience offered by online shopping.

Ahead of December, there are a few simple steps to follow to ensure you are protected before you begin purchasing.

According to the ACCC, by October 2018 there were more than 7,000 complaints about online shopping scams, costing Australian consumers more than $2.5 million.

Too good to be true?

Be suspicious of incredible bargains. If the price advertised for a Christmas present is too good to be true, then it probably is.

It’s a good idea to look at other websites to compare prices before purchasing.

Do your research

It’s important to know that you’re buying goods from reputable websites.

To check if a seller or website has a strong online presence, look on other sites for positive reviews left by other shoppers. This can help prevent you sending money with dodgy sellers.

You can do a quick online search to look for reviews of the website or online seller, and to check they are who they say they are.

Advice for shopping online

  • Be wary of merchants offering only internet banking transfers for purchases of goods/services - most legitimate businesses or online sellers will accept payment via credit card or PayPal.
  • Pay attention to the fine print - a lot of merchants will offer holiday special rates as an introductory rate and increase the prices later or sign you up to a subscription service.
  • Keep your receipts - they can be extremely helpful in resolving disputes down the track.

While personal vigilance is the best method of protection, our security teams work 24/7 to keep customers safe. If we spot suspicious activity with your cards or online transfers, we’ll take appropriate actions and contact you to confirm if it’s genuine or not.

And to avoid missing out on pre-holiday delivery, ensure you order well in advance as shipping dates can often blow out.

For more about safe online shopping and banking, check out Handy tips for secure online shopping and banking.

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