Staying confident when shopping online this Christmas
December 11, 2021 7:55 p.m.
WHATEVER the crisis is, Christmas is still the ultimate holiday event for Filipinos. Hard times won’t ever cancel this season of celebrations and generosity. Feasting and gifting are staples which means one thing — shopping.
According to a recent survey conducted by Kaspersky, Filipinos are the top new e-cash adopters in the Asia Pacific region at 37% followed by India (23%) and Australia (15%).
Survey respondents from the region said they have used digital payments due to convenience.
The pandemic has ushered in an extraordinary online shopping experience where window-shopping (checking out products), comparing prices before buying, and having the goods delivered right on the customer’s doorstep can all be done at home anytime with just one click.
Unfortunately, this rise in digital adoption is where cybercriminals are directing their efforts to.
The recently reported sim-swap incident worth almost two million pesos in just one attempt is an example.
Sim-swap is a scam used to intercept online banking SMS verification codes. To get hold of one-time passwords for financial transactions, cybercriminals create or fraudulently obtain a copy of the victim’s SIM card from the mobile operator.
It’s no surprise that a third of the survey respondents (31%) in APAC admitted being concerned about losing money when it comes to making online transactions.
“The pandemic has triggered more people to embrace online shopping. Although physical safety is essential, the safety of our finances, devices and information is also important, especially as phishing scams become more and more sophisticated and targeted. We expect cybercriminals to continue using tricks that will lure more victims to take the bait hence this festive season, we urge everyone to put their guards up against messages, calls, and even emails asking for critical information such as account number, OTPs, passwords, and more,” said Chris Connell, Managing Director for Asia Pacific at Kaspersky.
Here are some practical tips from Kaspersky for online shopping:
1. Stick to familiar brands you know or have heard of.
2. If you’re checking out a new brand, research it carefully and get its contact details like email, phone number, or address. Also, look for its return policy and feedback history which are good indicators of honesty and credibility.
3. Ensure your online accounts are off limits to your children and restrict their access to your credit card and bank information.
4. Consider getting an antivirus or anti-malware protection for your device.
Try Kaspersky Total Security (KTS) which has the useful Kaspersky Safe Money feature. It provides an extra layer of protection when shopping online — ensures you’re visiting a secure website, or it can open the site in a special, protected mode to prevent your passwords, credit card number, or personal data from being accessed by cybercriminals.
Kaspersky solutions with Safe Money features such as Kaspersky Total Security and Kaspersky Internet Security are currently being offered with up to 50% discounts during the anticipated 12.12 sale at Shopee and Lazada.
While ordering online:
1. Don’t give out any more information than is necessary to complete your purchase. Never share personal information over the phone unless you made the call. Never reply to any unsolicited request for personal information such as passwords, credit cards, or bank account numbers.
2. Only make payments online using safe and trusted methods. If you accidentally enter your credit or debit card information into a suspected malicious website or email, call your credit card company as soon as possible.
When you complete an online shopping session:
1. Always log off, especially if you share a device with someone else.
2. Keep a paper trail: print and save records of online transactions.
3. Read credit card statements when you get them and check for unauthorized charges that you should report immediately.
Atayde bats for moratorium on student loan payments during emergencies, calamities
March 17, 2023 9:00 p.m.
STUDENTS won’t have to worry paying their loans during times of calamities and emergencies, as Quezon City first district Congressman Juan Carlos “Arjo” Atayde has introduced a moratorium on the payment of student loans administered by higher educational institutions (HEIs).
The House Bill 7279, which Atayde filed last Feb. 21, headed into its first reading six days later in the Committee on Higher and Technical Education, chaired by Baguio City Rep. Mark O. Go.
He said the bill — once it turns to a law — will halt the payment of all the fees, charges, and costs relating to student loans and technical-vocational training institutions (TVIs) or by the Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education (UNIFAST) during emergencies.
It will cover all students residing in areas declared to be under a state of calamity or emergency — those who are enrolled in state universities and colleges (SUCs), local universities and colleges (LUCs), private HEIs, and public and private TVIs.
“We have to find a way to help our students and their families, when natural or even these man-made calamities hit them hard. We just have to make everything easy for them including a moratorium on the payment of student loans,” Atayde said. “It is a burden on a student and their family especially in difficult times like aftermath of typhoon, fire and earthquakes, among other disasters.”
“In the order of spending, student loans will be their least priority since spending will go mostly to basic necessities for survival,” Atayde added.
The moratorium shall be effective for the duration of the state of calamity or emergency and for 30 days after its lifting. No penalties shall be collected on the deferred payments.
“To provide adequate relief and protection to our students in times of calamities and emergencies, this measure shall allow the deferral of student loan collections for a reasonable period during and after the onset of disasters.”
The Quezon City lawmaker cited also the availability of the moratorium, which shall not adversely affect the status of the students concerned with regard to their eligibility for re-enrollment on the succeeding semesters or terms, or their eligibility for graduation.
“The proposed legislation doesn’t prevent public and private HEIs from implementing more favorable forms of payment relief or assistance to students affected by disasters, prohibiting students from voluntarily waiving the moratorium on student loan payments, or availing subsidies and assistance from the government,” Atayde concluded.
ShopeePay now available as a payment method for App Store, other Apple services in PH
March 16, 2023 1:59 p.m.
Beginning today, ShopeePay, Shopee’s integrated mobile wallet, is now available as a payment method for Apple services in the Philippines. Customers can use their ShopeePay account to pay for App Store, Apple Music, Apple TV app, and iTunes Store purchases, iCloud storage and more.
The addition of ShopeePay as an Apple ID payment method offers a new way to pay for Apple services without needing a credit card and still allows for easy, secure one-tap purchasing from Apple products including iPhone, iPad and Mac.
Customers can manage their Apple ID payment information in Settings on iPhone and iPad, or on their Mac or PC.
Agatha Soh, Director at ShopeePay commented, “ShopeePay is committed to meeting the needs of users who are increasingly expecting seamless payments across all platforms. We are excited to offer ShopeePay as a convenient payment option for our customers, and expand access to digital payments, benefitting more users.”
For more information on how to add ShopeePay as a payment method, please visit https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201266 or https://shopee.ph/m/ShopeePay-Apple-ID-PH.
Be bolder, braver, more confident at SM Supermalls’ Women’s Month celebration!
March 8, 2023, 8:30 p.m.
Ladies, take center stage as SM celebrates Women Power throughout the month of March. Lots of activities both online and on-ground are in store to empower women and girls all over the country.
Join the Future of Women Global Summit
SM Supermalls will be joining UN Women in kicking off the IWD 2023 celebration through a women’s summit on March 8, at the SM Aura Premier Samsung Hall. Focusing on the future of women in ICT, the two-part event will gather young women, country leaders, policy makers, and advocates together to share perspectives and affirm their commitment to supporting digital equality for women and girls.
Photo courtesy of SM City Lucena
Photo courtesy of SM City San Jose del Monte
Support your local Womenpreneurs
Great finds for ladies are on sale at the SM Womenpreneur Market! This pop-up of small and medium businesses owned by women for women will give you everything you need from food and beauty to wellness and fashion!
Wednesdays are for women!
Shopping on Wednesdays has become even more tempting because the Women’s Wednesday Sale is back! Achieve the glow-up you deserve with special discounts, deals, and promos on fashion, beauty, and fitness exclusively for women every Wednesday of March. So don’t hold back on your shopping; you deserve all these and more!
A beautiful treat of wellness all for you
Forda glow-up and pampering sesh tayo this month because lots of self-care deals are available at the Women’s Wellness Sale. Avail of great deals from wellness salons on facials, hair and body treatments, nail care, and massage from March 1 to March 31.
And more deals online!
Special deals are up for women via the SM Malls Online app. Get the best brand offerings every Wednesday from shoes and beauty and wellness to home and hobbies. Use the code WOMEN and get an extra 10% off, capped at 250. What’s great is that there’s no minimum purchase required!
Also, a collection of brand vouchers will be sent to all women SM Malls Online shoppers valid all month. Wait for your Beauty Pass and give yourself the retail therapy you deserve with tons of discounts, GWP deals, samplers, in-store pick up bonuses, and mystery boxes!
Plus, the SM Malls Online app will be hosting self-care sessions online. Follow SM Supermalls on social media to get a dose of starter packages, Get-Ready-With-Me routines, and beauty products that your favorite beauty experts swear by.
Photo courtesy of SM City East Ortigas
Photo courtesy of SM City Manila
Celebrate Women Power on IG!
Capture the beauty and power of women at the beautiful spots and installations all over SM. Be free to express your own uniqueness and creativity in the specially-designed selfie spaces in partnership with Selfie Studio. Don’t forget to tag us on IG!
We don’t know about you but exciting days await every SM woman. So be bolder, braver, and more confident! With these activities, you can confidently step forward in fashion, beauty, wellness, and express yourselves to make a positive impact.
Stay updated on all things women this IWD 2023 by visiting www.smsupermalls.com and following @smsupermalls on social media.