PHOTO - [from left] CyberSecurity Malaysia CEO, Lt Col (R) Prof Dato' Husin Jazri and Mr Elias Ghanem, MD, PayPal Southeast Asia and India both collaborating and launching December 2011 as the "Safe Online Shopping Month."
Malaysians must shop smarter online, said government security agency CyberSecurity Malaysia and online payments provider PayPal.
CyberSecurity Malaysia chief executive officer Lt. Col (retired) Prof Dato' Husin Jazri said the agency is supporting PayPal's multimedia campaign, launched on 24 November 2011, which gives Malaysians top security tips to ensure a safer online shopping experience during the forthcoming holiday season.
Husin said cyber crime has continued to increase significantly. "During 2010, the agency received more than 8,000 reports of cyber security incidents via its Cyber999 Help Centre. From January to October 2011, the help centre has recorded 13,173 incidents compared to 6,204 in 2010 (for the same period), an increase of 112 percent.
"Since 1997 to October 2011, the agency recorded 35,368 reported incidents, which do not count machine cyber security instances. Fraud, which is the highest cause, accounts for 35 percent of these, and content-related vulnerabilities [such as spam] account for 27 percent," he said.
"However, the public should not run away from the convenience of online facilities but should be smarter and safer and aware always of the potential of fraudulent activities when they are online," said Husin.
PayPal Southeast Asia & India managing director Elias Ghanem said the benefits of online shopping, which included convenience and ready access to the best bargains, outweighs the vulnerabilities in the online world. "Online shopping is becoming a more dominant way to shop, which, coupled with PayPal's buyer protection system that gives protection to both the buyer and seller, offers the best of all worlds."
Online shopping study
Ghanem revealed results of PayPal's first study - 'PayPal Online and Mobile Safety Insights' - conducted by Nielsen Research of a 1000 Malaysian netizens aged 18 and above who had made online transactions, including shopping and banking, in the past three months.
"With the growing popularity of digital lifestyles and the increasing potential for online identity theft and fraud worldwide, the majority of Malaysians (92 percent) said they want a more secure way to transact online," he said. "The study also revealed that Malaysian shoppers are concerned about sharing financial information with nearly three out of four respondents (72 percent) uncomfortable with sharing their credit card, debit card or bank account details online."
He said the value of trust and security was linked to amounts Malaysians were prepared to pay through online transactions. "Nearly 80 percent of respondents said they would only spend up to RM150 (US$46.90) on an unfamiliar website, whereas 50 percent of respondents said they would spend greater than RM500 (US$156.35) on a familiar website. In addition, more than half of the respondents do not think that they will get their money back if the items they bought online are undelivered or significantly different from what they purchased."
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