Why You Should Start Using PayPal for Safer Online Payments

There are only two types of online payment options: credit cards and everything else. There really is nothing else. 
Many people cringe at the thought of using their credit cards on the internet, for fear of hacks or security breaches. But for every purchase you make, even in person, there is always a risk, however small, that someone may access your payment information. 
So when it comes to data breaches, it's just a matter of when (and where), not if. 

Since founded in 1998, this online payment service has become a leader in online safety and consumer protection. Compared to plain bank-issued credit cards, PayPal is still your safer online payment option. 
It's a more secure way to pay for your digital purchases, but it doesn’t eliminate all the possible risks related to the misuse of sensitive information. 
If you’ve never used it before, you must be wondering what it is about this payment service that makes it the go-to choice for global web-based payments. 
Take a look at the following benefits of using PayPal to see more clearly why you should start using it for your transactions.

1. Up-to-date encryption of your sensitive data

PayPal keeps your data and transaction safe with the most recent "end-to-end encryption" which means that only the users involved get to see each other's messages. 
In their own words, the company's blog states that it employes a team of security and compliance experts to make sure everything is up to industry standards. 
It appears to be so secure that it would even compensate hackers hefty amounts of money if they can find vulnerabilities in its system through a bug bounty program at Hacker One
View their security reporting guidelines here

2. You'll still use your credit cards, but with a layer of protection.

Instead of handing over your credit card information to a stranger on the web, we get an extra layer of protection. 
A transaction with PayPal only requires your email address. Your credit card information and banking information are stored in one safe place. 
If something out of the ordinary happens, you won’t need to have your card issuer send you a new card, which would’ve probably taken weeks or months to arrive, or issue chargebacks, which freezes your account during the resolution process.

3. Painless dispute resolutions

With its buyer protection program, we'll be reimbursed if the transaction fails.
The company has a customer-focused resolution center that connects sellers with dissatisfied customers who are free to dispute any transactions following the platform's guidelines.
It offers protection for both buyers and sellers, as well as freelancers. 
So if you're getting paid for your freelance works through this online payment service, you might be eligible to receive rebates in over 200 markets and most popular freelance marketplaces that use PayPal.

4. A freelancer's friend

PayPal is a pioneer. It's been around the longest and is accepted by major freelance marketplaces.
If a marketplace is on the web, chances are it pays through PayPal. UpWork, 99designs, Fiverr, Guru, Creative Market, online writing platforms,  Patreon, you name it. 
It also offers a number of tools that freelancers should take advantage of: payment requests, email invoicing, personalized PayPal.Me link, and the PayPal app. 
With its payment request feature, you ask for payment with just your client's email address. 
With the personalized link, you'd be able to link with text messages, social media posts, even email. 
Finally, you're free to manage transactions and payments on the go with their app. 

5. Free to join

We now know that to securely make a request for payment to anybody in the world we only need to know their email address. So what happens after that? 
Once the recipient gets your payment request email, they can choose to open an account with PayPal, which is completely free, or if they've already got one, they can transfer your money. 
As a middleman service, PayPal does charge a number of fees for the monetary transaction it caters, such as when people send money using their cards, conversion fees for transactions to accounts in non-US countries, or for withdrawing to bank accounts in your local currencies. 
However, we need to keep in mind that:
  • Currently PayPal caters to 203 countries, and 25 currencies, but not equally. Services may be limited depending on where we are in the world. 
  • PayPal is unavailable in some countries. 

6. Multiple sources of funding

Instead of relying on a single credit card to fund all your online purchases, you can set up more than one source of funding with PayPal.
Below is a video tutorial I've created to show you how to connect your bank account and your credit card to a PayPal account.

[VIDEO TUTORIAL: Connect your bank & credit card to PayPal]

In some countries, you can also connect a debit card. 
The payment gateway works with major credit cards from Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. If one card fails, PayPal will automatically look for funds from your other sources. 
In addition  to online shopping, these bank accounts can also be set to receive freelance payments when you withdraw from your PayPal. You'd be able to skip the lines at the bank by cashing in on your hard-earned money as soon as it is received. 

7. Faster checkouts

Again, all our financial information is kept safe in one place, so there won't be any need to retype the credit card numbers and CVV codes every time we make a purchase. 
You'll only need to enter your details once when you create an account. 
This hassle-free payment processing is now starting to be used in brick-and-mortar stores that accept PayPal as a form of in-store payment. 

So there you have it. 
Aside from its ease of use and transparent fees structure, you'll also be able to find everything you need to know from its website. 
Keep in mind that while it is a safer option, PayPal certainly isn't free. 
Fees are quite high for international payments, but their pricing fees are fairly transparent, which certainly beats the additional costs banks charge for international wire transfers. 
Stay wary of suspicious links in emails, and take active measures to make certain that your sensitive financial information is safe before, during, and after the transactions. 

[Illustration by Icons 8 from Icons8]


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