PayPal or Credit Card—Which is Safer?

Find out whether PayPal or a credit card is the best way to stay safe from fraud and prevent identity theft when making online purchases.

Laura Adams, MBA
5-minute read
Episode #266

PayPal or Credit Card?

Tip #2: Don’t Link PayPal to Your Bank Account

Though paying with a bank account or debit card on PayPal is very convenient—especially if you don’t use a credit card—it’s not as safe. If a thief hacks your PayPal account, money could be taken directly out of your bank account. Your potential liability for fraudulent charges is different for debit and credit cards.  

You can refute fraudulent bank charges—but the problem is that you have to catch them quickly in order to get financial protection. On the other hand, if you link PayPal to a credit card and it gets compromised, your maximum liability can never exceed $50.

Learn more in How to Stay Safe from Debit and Credit Card Fraud.

Tip #3: Use a Strong PayPal Password

For each financial account that you access online, be sure to create a unique username and password. If you use the same password in multiple places and a cyber thief hacks one of your accounts, you’re making it easy for them to get into all your accounts!

Each password should have no less than 8 characters and be comprised of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols (like an exclamation point or dollar sign, if allowed). Using a password manager like Roboform makes it easy to create and remember long, complex passwords.

Check out Tech Talker’s episode, How to Create and Manage Strong Passwords.


About the Author

Laura Adams, MBA

Laura Adams received an MBA from the University of Florida. She's an award-winning personal finance author, speaker, and consumer advocate who is a frequent, trusted source for the national media. Money-Smart Solopreneur: A Personal Finance System for Freelancers, Entrepreneurs, and Side-Hustlers is her newest title. Laura's previous book, Debt-Free Blueprint: How to Get Out of Debt and Build a Financial Life You Love, was an Amazon #1 New Release. Do you have a money question? Call the Money Girl listener line at 302-364-0308. Your question could be featured on the show.