Money transfer towards foreign countries can be necessary not only to buy goods and services online, but also when we are abroad for work or study.
There are different payment methods that can be good or bad according to our needs.
A payment by credit card can be done by providing the seller with the card's number, expiry date and security code ( on the back of the card), as well as the holder’s name.
When paying by credit card it is important to be careful in order to avoid the codes theft and a possible fraudulent use of the card:
- when using a credit card online, always be careful that the website is protected ( address with httpsand not http and a closed locker at the bottom of the browser page). When available, use the security services offered by the card provider: some societies send a confirmation sms, which allows a prompt intervention in case of frauds.
- If the payment is done on the seller’s premises, always be careful to be present at the moment of payment, to be sure no one can copy the card’s numbers.
In case of loss or theft, immediately ask the provider to block the card.
Paypal is a service offering online payments. It is the most used online payment method on Ebay. It allows to make transactions without sharing the card’s details with the payment recipient, in fact, Paypal uses the email address as account number and bank code. By freely registering on the website, it is possible to open an account and to associate a credit card or to charge it via bank transfer. Paying is free of charge, while receiving is subjet to fees.
Paypal foresees also a series of rules to protect the buyer. They apply when the seller does not send the goods or if this latter is not in conformity with the order.
Debit ( rechargeable) cards
Debit cards work the same way as credit or ATM cards. The only difference is that you can spend only the charged amount and nothing more.
The advantage of these cards is that in case of abuse, the damage cannot be higher than the charged amount. They are therefore good to be used online.
Cash on delivery
This method foresees the payment in cash at delivery. However, this choice is often more expensive than others ( credit card or bank transfer) and is getting unused.
Cross border bank transfer
The bank transfer can be processed at the bank premises or online. The cross border transfer within the EU has the same cost of a national transfer ( if lower than 12500 euros). To process a transfer it is important that the recipient provides the SWIFT code beside the IBAN.
There are societies that deal with money transfers abroad. They allow consumers to transfer cash worldwide in a few minutes and without the obligation of having a bank account. This service is often provided in supermarkets, postal offices or call centres.
Often these services are used to commit frauds, it is therefore important to be careful in using them:
- when receiving a cheque with instructions saying that it is also necessary to send some money via a money transfer society, always check that the document of credit is reliable.
- Only transfer money to well known persons or firms.
Electronic wallet and PAN numbers
This method is used to make online purchases. The payment is processed through credit card, but the seller cannot see the identification codes. For every online purchase, the bank creates a specific PAN number which does not contain any reference to the real credit card codes.
For every online purchase a new PAN is created, therefore, in case of fraud, the cyber criminal can steal only the amount for that specific purchase.