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Students amongst savviest online shoppers this Christmas


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New research has shown that, whilst the UK is amongst the top ten global hotspots for online fraud, students are outwitting those who are trying to steal their details online.

Students, who are likely to own smartphones, tablets and designer clothes, are prime targets for online fraud - and over half of 18-24 year olds say that to avoid falling victim they would prefer to pay for online items with cash.

To help avoid online fraud, a new system has now been developed that allows people to use cash to pay for items online, rather than using credit/debit cards and having to give out personal details, which could easily be hacked into.

The Ukash system means that people who shop online can convert their cash into a secure, unique 19-digit code. This can be done at thousands of retail outlets in locations around the UK, such as shops, petrol stations and kiosks. The codes can also be issued online from the company’s website. Ukash means that online shoppers can pay for their goods in a secure way, which is also convenient and hassle free.

Research carried out by Ukash has revealed that students are the most likely to use this ‘cash online’ payment method, with 52% of 18-24 year olds saying that they would prefer to use the Ukash payment method, rather than use their credit/debit card. It was also found that a third of all online consumers would prefer to be able to use cash when buying from websites.

It is unclear what the cause of the rise in ‘cash online’ payments is. It may be due to people not having access to online banking, or it may be due to the fear of online fraud. But whatever the reason, ‘it seems that online shoppers are becoming wiser’, as Miranda McLean, the Marketing Director from Ukash says.

Research by Ukash also suggests that 70% of consumers believe they can find better deals online than on the high street. In the build up to Christmas, people can get carried away with their high spirits, under the illusion that they have found a bargain, when in reality they could be about to let themselves in to be a victim of fraud. With Ukash, there is no need to have the worry about this happening, meaning shoppers can relax whilst making their purchases.   

The Ukash payment system is not only available in the UK, but in over 50 different countries around the world. The website also has a transferral method in corporation with MoneyGram, whereby users can transfer online cash to friends and family abroad, again without having to use the online banking system.

Another advantage of using the Ukash system is that the maximum single voucher which can be purchased is £200, meaning that it is a great way to keep to a budget, needed by many especially around Christmas time. Whereas credit and debit cards can allow online shoppers to run away with their spending, the Ukash ‘cash online’ method means that spending must be stopped when this limit is reached. 


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