Protecting yourself from online cybercrime and scams are two themes for this year’s World Consumer Rights Day, on 15 March 2018.

With this in mind, The Consumer Council has three top tips on how to shop online safely and avoid being scammed.

Philippa McKeown-Brown, Head of Consumer Empowerment and Protection at The Consumer Council said: “Many of us now shop online but not all of us know how to recognise a safe website. Follow our top tips to shop safely online:”

1. Make sure the website will keep your card details safe – look for ‘https’ in the website address (the ‘s’ stands for secure) and check for a padlock icon in the browser bar.

2. If you’re buying from a company you haven’t used before, research them first to check reviews and previous customers’ feedback.

3. Avoid clicking on web links sent to you in an email as these may direct you to a fake (but realistic looking) website. Better to type in a website address yourself into a search engine and see what comes up.

For more top tips download a copy of The Consumer Council’s ‘Guide to Shopping Safely Online’ and ‘Scams – Know the signs, stop the crime’ leaflet from or request a free hardcopy by telephoning 0800 121 6022, Twitter (ConsumerCouncil) or Facebook (Consumer Council Northern Ireland).

For more information and advice on scams visit

If you have a story or want to send a photo or video to us please contact the Derry Now editorial team on 028 7129 6600 for Derry City stories Or 028 7774 3970 for County Derry stories. Or you can email [email protected] at any time.