eGift Cards v Physical Gift Cards – How Safe are eGift Cards?

If you are wondering what to choose for whom at the last moment, eGift cards can be the best way to release your stress as gift shopping heats up. Online gift cards keep on rising when it comes to popularity and customers, these days, prefer the speed of purchase, ease of delivery, and no stress. Apparently, people no longer have any stigma of offering a gift that cannot be kept in a gift box.

According to a recent survey by InComm on consumers who purchased eGift cards earlier this year, 63% sent the gift online and ditched the plastic, while it was 57% in 2013. Around 90% of youth from 18 to 25 years old showed more interest in online gift cards than they were around a few years ago. 

Digital gifts become even more popular with time. Around 88% of digital gift cards were sold during the days around Christmas last year, while it was 80% in 2013 for the same period. Hence, digital gift cards are high on demand these days.

The Safety Issues

Despite growing popularity and demand, there are still some security concerns with e-gift cards. After all, there is a long alphanumeric code between money and a hacker who can steal the same by cutting and pasting. As India is going digital with chip-based EMV credit cards, criminals are still moving ahead to e-gift cards, according to some analysts.

There are several countries focusing to move to EMV to avoid credit card fraud by considering the fraud risk to increase. In a survey, security is the main concern when it comes to buying something online.

This is the reason why most e-gift cards are accessed with email registration so one can easily keep track of the value in case a gift is stolen or lost. Physical cards are mostly useless if they are lost. But there are certain concerns with e-gift cards. One can easily spend online with those digital cards but they can be a hassle in retail stores. Some consumers have to print out the card to use and e-gifts can be spent or stored on devices. But still, 96% of recipients showed interest in storing gift cards on their devices.

How to secure an eGift Card?

If you are planning to send an e-gift card, you should ensure that your recipient has received it as it could end up being filtered to the spam folder. While getting an e-gift card, make sure one can get the credit quickly. For example, you can store the Amazon gift cards on your account as long as you want. This way, you won’t lose track of the code on the email and secure the money.

It’s also the time to protect your email account. It is cleared to the hackers that our inboxes are going to be filled with valuable codes for gift cards as the holiday season is on. So, it is always wise to change your email password. If you feel that your personal details are compromised, keep track of your credit to find out if your identity is stolen.

For specific services and merchants, physical gift cards are easily available at online stores. Before buying gift cards, always check the protective stickers or coating to avoid tampering of card and whether PIN has been leaked.

eGift Cards vs. Store-Bought Gift Cards

Gift card codes can be copied by scammers while on the shelves and funds might be stolen that are loaded by you. If card ID and proof of purchase are furnished, some people can replace stolen or lost gift cards. So, it is better to have a receipt along with your gift card.

You can also choose prepaid gift cards that you can reload. The best thing is that you can use them wherever you use the debit cards from merchants like Visa or American Express.

In the case of fraud, your liability might be limited in case you report any unauthorized access within 2 days. Some merchants might seal the card. In the case of e-gift cards, you can send a redeemable code to your recipient through text, email, or social messaging. The card may be designed or made printable for smartphones only. Some e-gift cards can be redeemed online only, not at physical stores.

Remember that you are giving away a lot of details of you and your recipient while giving an e-gift card. However, in case someone loses the code, one can easily replace the e-gift cards. It is true that consumers rely on companies to secure the data. So, ensure that the company is reliable before buying e-gift cards and remind your recipient to change passwords often to avoid potential risks.