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Be careful about submitting personal information to websites

Priority Level: 
26 August 2015

Concerns over protecting personal information provided to websites have come into focus due to the reported hack of a dating website and the subsequent release of user data into the public domain.

You are advised to carefully consider the consequences of disclosing personal information, such as your name, address and credit card details, to any website. You should read websites’ terms and conditions as well as their privacy policies and consider the potential risks before submitting your data. These risks could include potentially embarrassing public disclosure, financial loss or identity theft.

Staying safe

If you choose to provide personal information to websites:

  • Do your research and shop around—for example, check online for reviews or comments about the website or business behind it
  • Only deal with trusted or reliable websites
  • Check the terms and conditions of using the website, in particular how it deals with personal information
  • Be aware that the website may retain personal information even if profiles are deleted from view
  • Do not provide more personal information than is strictly required by the website
  • Keep records of all interactions with the website
  • If the website requires you to make a payment, only pay via a secure web page that has a valid digital certificate
  • Use a secure payment method  

More information

Stay Smart Online has information on how to protect your identity and buying and selling online.