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19/01/2021 - 

Data Privacy Day 2021: 3 Online Privacy Tips to Help You Stay Safe

International Data Privacy Day tipsAnnually, 28th January is observed as International Data Privacy Day. It’s a day of awareness and knowledge exchange regarding online privacy and data protection. You may not have heard about it, but if you’re spending any time online, it concerns you. Most online interactions involve sharing personal or banking details. It doesn’t happen every day, but if these data get misused, the consequences can be serious.

The good news is, protecting your privacy online isn’t completely out of your hands. So, this year, let’s mark Data Privacy Day with 3 simple tips for your online privacy. 

Tip 1: Pay safely online

When shopping online, there are two key things to pay attention to - where you pay and how you pay. 

Check the URL

When making payments online, keep an eye on the URL during checkout. Does it start with HTTPS (as opposed to HTTP)? Good. That indicates that your data are transferred over a secure connection. If the checkout URL contains HTTP instead of HTTPS, then you’re most certainly dealing with a website you shouldn’t trust. In that case, you’d better make a purchase from somewhere else instead.

Choose safe payment methods

To eliminate all risk of your data being misused while shopping online, the best you can do is not provide any data. Can you avoid sharing personal and banking details during online payment? It depends on the payment method you choose.

If you’re paying by credit or debit card, you’ll usually need to share your address, your account number, and, in the case of credit cards, your security code. If you pay with PayPal, then you won’t need to share card info with the shopping website, only with the PayPal platform itself. 

There’s another way to share even less personal and banking details when shopping online. It’s by paying with a prepaid credit card code. It’s simple: you buy a code that represents an amount of money of your choice. And then you shop online by using that code as a payment method. In this case, you generally don’t have to provide additional personal or banking details. That can vary depending on the value of your purchase, so it’s always good to check the terms of your chosen prepaid credit card provider.

Extra tip: You can use prepaid credit cards for more than just online shopping - e.g. for in-app purchases on social media. So, next time you wonder how to get credits on IMVU, a prepaid credit card is a safe option.

Tip 2: Use a secure email provider

Secure your online privacy
Email communication is another online activity that most of us are involved in daily. And our emails contain a lot of data. To keep your data safe, there’s more to consider than just who has access to your email account or how hard to guess your password is. Your email provider also matters.

Big providers can be an attractive target for hackers and are sometimes involved in data breaches that result in passwords leaking. This obviously doesn’t happen every day, but if you want to be on the safe side, do your own research on the safest email providers. Usually, these are the ones that offer encrypted email services, such as StartMail. They are often paid, but that’s a worthwhile investment in your privacy.

To make your email use even safer, you can pick an encrypted email service provider that accepts payment by prepaid credit card or Bitcoin (which you can also purchase with a prepaid Crypto Voucher code). That means minimal personal and banking details shared.

Tip 3: Take control of your Facebook privacy

One thing to know about social media, and Facebook in particular, is that when creating a profile, you accept the default privacy settings. These change occasionally, but usually they mean that your profile and posts are public by default. If this isn’t your intention, it’s good to know that you can change your privacy settings. To do so, head to the privacy section in your profile and take a good look at all the options you have.
Clearly, you don’t (yet) have full control over what happens to your data on social media. However, there’s always some data sharing that you can opt out of. And if you do that, you’re increasing your privacy online.

More ways to increase online privacy?

If you’re interested in other ways to pay online without sharing personal details, take a look at our prepaid credit cards and gift cards. There you’ll find prepaid digital codes you can use to pay for your gaming or entertainment service. By opting for prepaid, you can avoid providing your payment details to the platform or website you’re using. Not to mention, you’ll get more flexibility as you won’t be committing to a subscription.

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