Is it safe to apply for a credit card online (internet)? In short, yes, it is generally safe to apply for credit cards online, and people do it every day. In fact, it is probably just as safe (if not sometimes safer) than applying via mail. I have applied for the majority of my own credit cards online through the internet (both business credit cards and personal credit cards), and I have never had a problem with fraud or anything on the ones I applied for online.
Even though it is safe to do, you will want to follow some basic safety tips before you ever apply online for a credit card. Here are some basic tips.
How to Apply For a Credit Card Online via the Internet Safely
- Only use a secure personal computer. Do not use a public computer such as a school computer, work computer, or library computer. These sometimes store data, or may have a program installed to monitor your web surfing (which could reveal information you type). Therefore, I recommend only using a secure personal computer.
- Ensure your personal computer is safe by eliminating all spyware, and running a virus check to make sure your PC isn’t comprimised. Also, make sure you have downloaded and installed the latest updates for your browser and have the appropriate security settings, and make sure you have your firewall enabled.
- Visit Secure Sites–Make sure you visit secure sites that actually belong to a known credit card company. Never reply to emails or other suspicious methods. Instead, visit the credit card websites directly, and make sure they have a security certificate active. This will ensure you are applying with the actual company (as opposed to a fake/fraudulent site).
- Don’t Save the Information– Once you fill out important information such as social security numbers, make sure that you don’t save a copy of that on your computer. Instead, print out the page, and store it in a safe place.
If you follow those basic internet safety tips, it will be safe and secure for you to apply for credit cards online. I have applied for several myself, and I prefer this method.
Don’t forget, there are risks with mailing an application as well. The mail could get lost, a postal worker could steal it, or someone could potentially send you a fake application with a fake return address in an attempt to get your information. So always be safe, and remember that you can apply online just about as safely as you can mail it–if not safer in some cases!