Concerns about Internet fraud are not prohibiting Americans from shopping online. Results from an ACNielsen International Research survey recently commissioned by PayPal and eBay indicate that online shoppers will increase their e-commerce activities, citing improved security. In addition, the survey reports that the majority of Internet shoppers are increasingly aware of potential fraud when shopping online, including the proliferation of fake or “spoof” e-mails. In fact 75 percent of respondents indicate awareness of spoofing.
The survey, conducted in March 2004, is based on feedback from approximately 1,000 online shoppers who made an online purchase in the previous 30 days. Findings show that 53 percent of online shoppers plan to buy even more on the Internet this year because of the convenience, speed, selection and increased security the Internet offers. Fifty-one percent say the Internet became a safer place to shop in 2003 and 61 percent believe it will become even safer in 2004.
“The study confirms our belief that online shoppers are getting smarter about security and that the majority of people have had no problems shopping online,” said Rob Chesnut, Vice President of Trust and Safety for eBay and PayPal. “Online security is central to everything we do at eBay and PayPal. This study gives us some important insight as we continue to improve our advanced fraud protection initiatives.”
Simple steps to follow to shop safely online
PayPal has developed a series of simple and straightforward tips consumers can use to shop safely online. These tips can be found in the “e-Commerce Safety Guide,” a recently developed handbook authored by Chesnut, which provide tips for online shopping and avoiding fraud on the Web, available at [www.paypal.com/security].
1. Learn as much as possible about both the product and seller: Online shoppers should get to know merchants through several sources: reputation systems, previous purchases, referrals through friends or reviews and comments from other shoppers. Learning as much as you can about a merchant is as important in the online world as it is in the offline world.
2. Understand each retailer’s refund policy: Look for refund policies and buyer protection programs from either the web site or payment service used. In many cases, by using refund policies and PayPal, which offers a buyer protection program, you will be protected against fraud if something goes wrong. These simple guidelines will give shoppers peace of mind when shopping online.
3. Use a secure payment process: Choose a payment method that is reputable and never shares personal financial information with merchants, such as a major credit card or PayPal. Make purchases from that one account to avoid distributing financial information to multiple web sites.
4. If an offer sounds highly suspicious or too good to be true, it probably is: Just like in the offline world, be extremely cautious. Read the fine print and be wary of unreasonably low bargain prices or unusually attractive promises. Be cautious if merchants insist upon being paid in cash or through wiring money.
The ACNielsen survey was Web-based and conducted among 1,000 online shoppers in the U.S. Respondents consists of those who made an Internet purchase within the last month.
About ACNielsen International Research
ACNielsen International Research, a VNU business, is the world’s leading marketing information company. With 21,000 employees worldwide offering services in more than 100 countries, ACNielsen provides market research, information, analysis and insights to the consumer products and service industries. Clients rely on ACNielsen’s market research, proprietary products, analytical tools and professional service to understand competitive performance, uncover new opportunities and to raise the profitability of their marketing and sales campaigns.
PayPal, an eBay Company, enables any individual or business with an email address to securely, easily and quickly send and receive payments online. PayPal’s service builds on the existing financial infrastructure of bank accounts and credit cards and utilizes the world’s most advanced proprietary fraud prevention systems to create a safe, global, real-time payment solution. Founded in 1998, PayPal has more than 45 million accounts and is available to users in 38 countries around the world. More information about the company can be found at .