Irish spend €2.8m online but are tightening their belts

We are still splashing the cash online even if tough economic times have reined in the spending.

A survey of 1,000 people on behalf of ESET Ireland has found 91% have spent money online and the total internet shopping outlay in a given year is close to €2.8m.

The survey indicates tighter belts have meant less cash, on average, being spent per individual on buying items online, yet 63% of respondents have spent more than €200 online in 2013, and 22% of respondents have spent between €500 and €1,000 this year.

The survey reveals that about 6% said they had spent more than €3,000 online this year while twice as many respondents said they had spent between €1,000 and €3,000 in online purchases. About 6% of respondents said they had spent more modestly, with purchases of between €1 and €50.

Respondents agreed they were spending less this year online than in 2012 due to having less disposable income.

The mean spend was calculated at €867 per person, per year, so projecting, using the survey data and the 91% of respondents who spend money online, it equates to an estimated total spend of €2.8m on internet shopping.

The Amárach research was carried out on behalf of ESET Ireland, which makes anti-virus software.

The company warned that because of the prominence of online shopping, customers needed to ensure they took adequate steps to guard against cybercrime, particular when it comes to last-minute deals online ahead of Christmas.

Among the recommendations to ensure safe online shopping is to look for secure “https” connections on the sites where you shop (rather than just “http”).

The company also recommends checking PayPal and card balances regularly for any unusual expenses, and stopping credit card payments immediately in the event of discovering anything suspicious.

Key words such as the names of popular items, brand names, computer games, sales, deals, can lead to fake websites where search engines have been poisoned and ESET Ireland also recommend using different passwords for any sites that require an authenticated log-in.

* The company’s blog at www.blog.eset.ie has more tips.


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