Data Privacy Day: How to Buy Online Safely


In recent months, thousands of shoppers have turned to e-commerce for the first time and there are some tips that can be taken into account to browse online stores without compromising their privacy or risking a cyber attack.

Buenos Aires, Argentina, January 28th, 2021.– Next Thursday is the International Data Privacy Day, created in order to raise awareness in the general public about the importance of ensuring privacy in the era of the Internet and promoting better practices. E-commerce numbers grew enormously in the last year, as did the chances of suffering a cyber attack or personal data of users being used illegally.

Since 2007, when Data Privacy Day was created, the problem has become increasingly important: currently, six out of 10 people in the world are active Internet users, a number that grows every year. According to a study conducted by CertiSur S.A. and D’Alessio IROL, 89% of the Argentinian population has access to the Internet.

Many of these users leave their personal data on the web: when they create an e-mail or a profile on a social media, when they make a purchase, participate in a raffle or complete a survey, for example. According to the cybersecurity company Kaspersky, more than 20.5 million cyber attacks on users at home were recorded in the region between January and September 2020. Argentina ranks fifth in the ranking of countries for its number of registered cases, but it’s where there’s a greater likelihood of being attacked (based on the relationship between the number of attacks and users).

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, digital transformation processes accelerated around the world and in different areas, because it’s a context in which technology serves as a tool to continue developing various activities,” explained Martín Malievac, the Research and Development Director for Napse. “Education, work and even social relations were digitized and the retail sector was one of the most transformed: since the isolation measures, many businesses opened online stores and thousands of consumers turned to e-commerce to avoid crowds and physical contact,” he added.

In the latest study published by the Chamber of E-Commerce of Argentina (CACE) last June, there was evidence of a year-on-year growth of over 100% in online purchases, an increase of 63% in units and 30% in orders. During CyberMonday 2020, organized by the same organization in November, the turnover of the participating brands grew by 76% compared to 2019, exceeding $20,000 million.

When shopping online, the registration of certain data that the store may need to finalize the transaction is always requested. Personal data is information related to an identified or identifiable living natural person (e.g., full name, age, sex, address, bank details, etc.). But many times this data is used illegally: for advertising purposes, to commit fraud, to encrypt the information of a device for ransom, among other possible reasons. Some precautions that users can take to avoid any violation of their privacy:

  • Secure passwords

Using easy-to-guess passwords, such as staggered numbers, home mailing address, or a birthday date makes users more vulnerable. It’s advisable to set passwords that include numbers and letters, uppercase and lowercase, and special characters. On the other hand, another common and dangerous practice is to use the same password “for everything” (e-mail, social media, bank account, among others). If you have the same password for all your accounts, hackers will easily access them.

  • Avoid public Wi-Fi networks

Wi-Fi networks that don’t have a password don’t encrypt the information that’s transmitted through them. It’s preferable never to connect to this type of network, but if you do, it’s advisable to avoid making purchases, opening accounts using a username and password, registering data of any kind or activating synchronization processes while you’re connected.

  • Shop on secure website

Never enter your personal data on unknown sites. Official stores are usually a good option. You can also easily check if the website is verified (if the site has a lock on the left side of the web address).

  • Don’t give data through other channels

After making a purchase or browsing a website, consumers may receive e-mails or messages asking them to fill in their personal information. It’s not advisable to answer those messages, even if the e-mail is attributed to a renowned brand or company. There are many fake e-mail boxes designed to collect data and commit fraud.

  • Read the terms and conditions

Websites that use personal data to carry out commercial transactions are bound to ask for consent and to inform what the data will be used for. Checking this information in the terms and conditions is a good way to know if you’re on a secure website.

Nosso website faz uso de cookies. Para mais informações, acesse nossa Política de Cookies.