Credit card transactions are always stressful. You are typing out your financial information on a website, and you can never be sure of its security protocols. Credit card scams are not as rare as you might think. In 2021, there were 66,090 reported cases of fraud.
But is there a way to protect yourself from your end? Considering that using a VPN is recommended for people who want to stay secure online, chances are this little app can be the answer. A VPN uses encryption, which you need when shopping online with your credit card.
So let’s see if using your credit card with a VPN is safe!
What is a VPN
Before we dive deeper into the subject, let’s talk about VPNs. Even if you are not heavily into cybersecurity and tech, you might have heard this term in the last couple of years. A VPN stands for a virtual private network, and it is a tool that allows a user to access the internet safely with the help of encryption.
When a person uses a VPN, they connect to a server located in a different country, thus hiding their actual IP address. The connection itself is encrypted, meaning that cybercriminals can’t see the data which is sent or received. This tool is favored by frequent travelers who want to ensure they can use free Wi-Fi without worrying about potential dangers.
Sometimes a VPN can come in handy when you want to access geo-blocked content. For instance, streaming services might offer different TV shows and movies in various countries. If you are eager to watch a show currently unavailable for you, simply connect to a server of your choice, and you will have a completely new selection of titles.
How to choose a VPN provider
There are many VPN providers right now, so choosing the perfect one comes down to your preferences and available budget. As you could’ve guessed, there are free and paid versions. Free versions are convenient for quick browsing, as they often have limited traffic. However, expect to see ads just popping up within these free VPN apps.
If you decide to pay a monthly fee for a VPN, expect additional options and features that can increase your online safety. Some VPN providers will give you access to other tools, like tracker blocker and more. These are all designed to boost your online security.
Furthermore, a high-quality VPN will be available on multiple platforms. It means you will have an option to install the app on several operating systems. Your phone, computer, tablet, or even a router can run a VPN. A VPN provider of your choice should have hundreds of available servers in countries across the globe. Threat protection must be at the highest possible level, with an active tracker blocker and virus warnings.
Of course, before you choose a VPN provider, double-check if they are legit. Read as many reviews as possible and learn about other people’s experiences with the company. Furthermore, always pay attention to the fine print on the official website, just to know where your personal information is stored.
Using VPN and credit cards
Your credit card information must be well-protected when shopping online. A VPN can help you with that. Switching on this service every time you order something on the internet is highly recommended, even if you are shopping on well-known websites such as Amazon.
A VPN creates an encrypted tunnel between you and the website you are ordering from. It means nobody else will be able to intercept your financial information. While it is recommended you avoid ordering anything on public Wi-Fi networks, you could do it if you have to, but always use a VPN. A man-in-the-middle attack is possible when you connect to a free Wi-Fi network.
As the name says, a man-in-the-middle attack involves a third party trying to insert themselves between you and a website you are shopping from. They often use a method called spoofing to make you connect to their fake network when you are in public. They own this network and can steal your files, address, phone number, and more.
Luckily, a VPN is made for these situations. You can safely browse the web anywhere, including in crowded cafes and public places. Even if a cybercriminal manages to get their hands on your data and intercept your communication, they won’t be able to access any of it, thanks to powerful VPN encryption.