Imagine you are on the way to a dinner with friends and decide to quickly check your bank account. To your surprise, there is no money in sight. Panic begins to shoot through your body as if someone had shocked you with 50 volts of electricity. Do you feel faint all of a sudden?
You decide to do some research because it was only yesterday when you had enough in your account. After further investigation, there is the discovery of the Uber rides. And not just this, but Uber rides in San Francisco.
This must be a case of credit card fraud. You do not know what to do while frantically phoning your mother to ask for help and desperately ask her what to do in this situation, only realizing that a simple call to your bank was the only logical thing necessary. Hang up, probably hearing that you should have known that solution all the time and call your friendly neighborhood bank.
This was my story not so long ago and as this was my first experience with credit card fraud, I had no idea how to proceed. However, none of you delightful people (hopefully) will find themselves in the same situation as I was. Or, if you're ever, you'll know how to handle it without having to tear your hair out and throw your phone across campus.
I realized, after having faced the long and tiring procedure to get a new card, that this happened only for online shopping.
By doing further research, I have discovered that hackers can actually create bogus websites that may seem real to attract any reluctant buyer.
Many people are victims of these sites and then fall into the traps of hackers who will stop at nothing to get what they are looking for.
These online data breaches have become a big problem in recent years, with people creating fake websites to imitate the reality of real shopping sites like Target, Home Depot, PlayStation Network and so on.
Innocent bystanders then create accounts on these sites, where they can save credit card information to which these hackers have access. This information eventually ends up in "carding shops", where other people can go and buy stolen credit card numbers. This is one of the reasons why online shopping is so dangerous.
Along with online shopping, viruses are another major culprit that could be used by hackers to infiltrate the system. Users must be looking for these fake websites that they might encounter or ads that might appear on popular social media.
Also, be cautious about buying items online when you are in an altered state of mind, which we probably all have in the past (especially when you are on a university campus).
Online purchases can also exceed the budget and many of these sites may be the same as providing information to the perpetrator. Never trust anyone or anything unless there is a valid proof.
My dear readers, you must be aware and safe at all times. In all our journeys in life, and while we are graduating from the "college sphere" and venturing into the real world, we need to maintain a sacred aspect in all transactions.
Giving information on us is a risk factor that can only disable us at the end, which is why it is particularly difficult and must be kept in mind with the ever-increasing progress of technology.