As online shopping grows, many consumers fear credit information will be stolen

Most of us will do some holiday shopping online. And half of us are scared of sites getting hacked this season.

Web security company Netsparker says the vast majority of Americans — 85 percent — are looking forward to online shopping this holiday season, even as 44 percent of us are worried sites we visit will get hacked.

Online shopping is only going up, and with that, retailer websites are requesting and keeping our credit card information. About one-third of Americans are letting websites save their banking information — instead of opting to type it in every time they make a purchase. Convenience and laziness seem a bit more important to consumers than safety.

If we don’t know the (lack of) security that companies offer their shoppers, we are leaving ourselves vulnerable to scams and hacks. Ferruh Mavituna, the CEO of Netsparker, says it’s up to both shoppers and companies to be safe.

“Retailers must make protecting their customers’ information a priority around the holidays—and year-round,” says Mavituna. “Consumers need to feel that their information is protected by the companies they do business with; investing in security scanning is an excellent way to show your customers that you care about keeping them safe.”

When it comes to types of scams, 44 percent of consumers worry that a hacker will steal their credit card information online, 34 percent worry about malware, while another 29 percent fear their credit cards will get skimmed in-store.  Another 39 percent are scared of their packages being stolen from their doorsteps. Regardless of how we shop, we are scared of getting our stuff stolen. Too bad they don’t know all the other ways they are going to get hacked.

Companies need to prioritize security, and consumers want safe online shopping. Netsparker says more than two-thirds of shoppers would make it a priority to visit a website that they knew it safe.

It’s not just the type of scams that Americans are afraid of, it’s also who is committing those scams. The survey says 35 percent of Americans fear North Korea is the biggest threat to safety, with 33 percent fearing Russia. Another 31 percent believe outdated software is a threat, but there are no follow-up notes that say if consumers are up-to-date on their computers and applications. At the lower end, 27 percent believe the greatest threat to safety is election hacking and 24 percent fear President Donald Trump.

We’ve been getting hacked at record speeds this year. If your information hasn’t been stolen let, you probably know someone who has been. Unfortunately, cyber attacks are going to continue to rise until companies of all kinds take data breaches seriously. As individuals, though, we also need to take into account that breaches can happen because we don’t take our own data seriously enough and we’re lazy.

It’s a group effort from all of us, but companies know they are more at risk for fraud. Sadly, they don’t have the plans in place to tackle hacks or even hire competent staff to prevent scams from hacking.

Meet the Author

Dori Zinn

Dori Zinn


Zinn is a freelance journalist based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.


scams, shop online, winter holidays

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Article last modified on December 8, 2017 Published by, LLC . Mobile users may also access the AMP Version: Holiday Cheers and Fears: Shop More, Get Hacked - AMP.