Are Online Donation Platforms Safe?

With thousands of online donation platforms and websites put up, the million dollar question is how safe these platforms are, as it pertains to their resistance to hacking, interception and theft.

This has made it a necessity for the users of the sites to be extra careful to ensure that they do not lose their funds or have their credit card information stolen. Some of the security assurances that donors and crowd funders can look out for include:

  • Security of transactions: the platform offers encryption through the SSL certificates.
  • Compliance with standards of data security for the payment card industry (PCI): these standards were developed in collaboration with Visa International, MasterCard Worldwide, JCB, and other large financial providers for facilitating consistency in data security measures.
  • The payment gateway: the reputation of the payment gateway as it pertains to past incidences.

Even with secure information and payment processing, the other security concern is whether the project or cause to be funded is legit or a scam. Crowdfunding platforms usually support diverse projects and because they are founded on trust, they are therefore vulnerable to fraud. Although in the past, family or a network of friends would ensure that such sites are credible before making their contributions, the reliability of such causes and projects today is questionable.

Scams have been unveiled where the monies obtained from crowdfunding were never used for the right purpose. Such fraud cases have encompassed projects that range from businesses to social causes. Scam campaigns can however be identified through:

  • Checking the credentials of the creator: this is usually done through tracking their social media accounts and identifying whether they have real networks.
  • Checking the background of the creator: this can be done through identifying the past achievements or testimonials and the credibility of the information provided.
  • Identifying whether the organization is legally registered: charities are regulated by law, and identifying whether they are truly registered and whether the credentials match can provide the proof of their validity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *