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PayPal vs. Credit Card: Which Is Safer?

Is PayPal safe compared to a credit card? It could be said that enabling safe transactions is PayPal's only job. But the job keeps growing, and the challenges are never-ending.

PayPal now has an estimated 392 million active accounts around the world and offers several products.1 Each one is designed to make it safe to send or receive money, electronically or in person.

PayPal has been around since 1998 when it emerged as a popular way to pay for purchases on eBay.

If it weren't as safe or safer to use than a credit card, cash, or a check, PayPal likely would have been consigned to the rubbish heap of dead technology platforms long ago.

Yet many still ask, is PayPal safe? That may not be quite the right question. PayPal has a range of weapons in place to keep other people's paws off your money.

But the weapons are most effective when you, the PayPal customer, take some basic precautions as well.

How Safe Is PayPal?

All PayPal transaction data are sent with end-to-end encryption designed to thwart any hacker seeking to capture private information as it moves from buyer to seller.

This means your financial information isn't revealed even to the recipient.

PayPal app users can employ a second authorization factor to make each transaction safer.

After enabling the SecurityKey feature, you'll get a temporary security code by text message that you enter in addition to your password.

How Safe Are Credit Cards?

Credit card companies have been known to be resistant to some of the cybersecurity practices that PayPal employs.

According to the Financial Services Roundtable, the banking industry does not pay hackers to alert them to security flaws.

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