You’d be forgiven if you’ve ever felt a little anxious or suspicious when entering online competitions. It is important to make sure you stay safe and secure when browsing and it’s no different to entering competitions. Take a look at how to differentiate whether Online Competitions are Safe or a scam and how to protect yourself.
Protect Your Personal Data
One of the most precious assets that can be taken from you is your personal data. If you are asked to sign up for a website that is not reputable and you use a password that is common across your logins, you are putting yourself at risk of an information breach from hackers, scammers and more. Simple ways to check if online competitions are safe is to spelling mistakes both in the details of the competition, also look carefully at the web address and make sure there are no spelling mistakes.
If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. This is a pretty good rule of thumb in most circumstances with online comps. Be wary if a competition offers something like holidays for free. When a website is suggesting that you can win prizes of this calibre with no strings attached, it’s likely to lack legitimacy. You can do your research to determine whether the website offering this kind of prize is fraudulent. Most brands that run big giveaways like this are huge household names you would recognise. If its a brand new website, brand or social media page offering a huge prize, its very likely to be a scam.
Many big named brands offer incredible giveaways, like radio shows, retailers and big publishers – if you are unsure, stick with brands you recognise and make sure you are on their main website.
Checking if Online Competitions are Safe
There are a few ways to check if a competition is legitimate if you’re having suspicions. There are various websites that offer a simple search system for companies so that you can check if the company advertising the prize draw is real. The government’s Companies House service allows you to look up any company you choose, so that is a helpful way to navigate your way through these competitions and separate the genuine from the fraudulent. However many brands operate under different trading names so this isn’t always fool proof and quite time consuming.
Alternatively, you can opt to search for the website directly to uncover its ranking online via Alexa – if it is “unranked” then its likely to be a new website which may indicate it isn’t genuine.
Another good thing to check is the terms and conditions. Every giveaway should have thorough T&C’s – if there aren’t any this is a clear warning sign. A genuine company running a competition will at least have terms that state entry requirements and closing date.
The Verdict on Safety in Online Competitions
There are always going to be scammers out there looking to take your money and your personal details but there are also tons of genuine online competitions out there. Don’t let scammers put you off this amazing and lucrative hobby! The key is to be smart, safe and utilise the above resources to ensure that you maintain that safety. Trust your instincts and never enter card details or provide payment information even if you are told you’ve won.
At Competition Finder we independently verify every giveaway that is listed on our website. So you can safely enter various safe and free competition from amazing brands in our database of online giveaways.