Is Paypal Safe?
No system, online or not, can claim to be 100% foolproof. That’s because perfection is only an ideal. Where a barrier to anything exists, someone, something, or someone is bound to circumvent that barrier and that’s the reason that Paypal continuously strives to keep its customers secure by implementing strict policies. Those policies, along with the cooperation of an informed customer base are what help to keep Paypal safe.
How Paypal Protects You
Paypal gives the assurance that you are protected on a 24/7 basis through the following means:
- Making sure that the browser you are using is running Secure Socket Layer 3.0 (SSL) or higher. This provides the highest degree of possible protection.
- When your information is going through electronically, it is protected by SSL, with an encryption key length of 168 bits. This is the topnotch level that is available commercially.
- Your personal information stored in Paypal servers are physically and electronically guarded. Paypal also makes use of firewall-protected servers that do not directly connect to the Net to keep your credit card and bank numbers safer.
Paypal’s data encryption is very stringent, and it’s usually a lack of awareness on scam protection that makes you vulnerable.
Fending off the Threats
Those who are of a criminal bent are always thinking of ways to rob other people of their money, through various means. As online technology becomes more and more progressive, so are online criminals becoming more sophisticated in their approach. Not all are successful though in gaming the system, or putting one over their targets.
Steering away from scammers, phishers, and other similar online criminals can be easily done by understanding and keeping to these procedures that will improve your experience with being safe as Paypal user:
- Always use a separate and new browser (i.e., one with a cleaned cache, and which you are not currently using for something else).
- When you receive an email that is purported to be from Paypal, look at the salutation right away. A true email from Paypal will begin by greeting you with your first and last name, or your business name that is connected to your Paypal account.
Scam emails will address you vaguely, such as “Dear PayPal User.”
- Paypal never sends out downloadable attachments to your email. Whether it is an image, document, or software, you can be sure it is not from Paypal. These kinds of attachments, when downloaded can make a virus resident in your computer, and steal your financial and/or personal data (together with your log-in name and password).
- Paypal will also never request you to provide the following details via email: your full name, account password, credit card number, bank account, PIN number, Social Security Number, or mother’s maiden name.
If you receive an email that asks you to do so, you can report it to Paypal.
- Never open your Paypal account and your email account associated with Paypal in a publicly accessible computer. This can include even your office computer, especially if you are on a network because you do not know who may be snooping.
- Never give out your log-in details to anyone, even your closest friends or relatives. It’s not that you’re being paranoid. You’re just making sure you stay safe.
- Use a strong password. Don’t use passwords that are clearly identifiable with your personal information. For example, don’t use your birthday or the dates of any event that is associated with or your family.
- Watch out for links in emails or in sites that purport to go to Paypal. Those are most likely phishing links.
Essentially, it’s not a question of whether or not Paypal is safe to use. It’s how and where you use it that makes you vulnerable to criminal activities.
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