Posted by: John | November 27, 2008

Keeping safe online

I posed this question to fellow OUTers (LGBT social networking site).

Someone has come up with the definitive answer:

1. Always use a credit card

Reason: Usually you can claim for fraudulent activity

2. Always use the same card for online transactions

Reason: It keeps it all in one place for this defined purpose

3. Sign up for Visa Secure or an equivalent service (ie Clicksafe)

Reason: Although you want to be protected IF someone defrauds you – why bother with the hassle – make your online purchasing as secure as possible

4. Make your password unique using combination of numbers and letters etc

Reason: Makes it harder to be defrauded

5. Change your password regularly

Reason: see no 4

6. Use Vista On-screen keyboard

Reason: Keylogging/tracking software tracks keys not mouseclicks – use the on-screen keyboard for important information

Of course ensure there’s no spyware, viruses or anything else before doing the above.

That still doesn’t solve the problem of: Where are my blessed Classical CDs!



  1. At the risk of reducing the definitiveness:

    – There’s a scheme for debit cards that gives them very similar protection to credit cards (automatically applies to all debit cards).
    – Most people don’t use Vista so the on-screen keyboard isn’t too relevant (though I’ll bet money that if lots of people are using it, hackers have found a way to capture keystroked).
    – If you want to reduce your chances of viruses and all that stuff, avoid Windows 🙂
    – The most likely way for you to be defrauded is for your card details to be stolen from an online merchant and sold, along with thousands of others. Strong passwords and clicksafe make no difference at all to this, nor does using a secure connection or onscreen keyboard. Your only defence is the legal right to reclaim your money from your bank.

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