Three Ways Credit Card Companies Protect Their Cardholders From FraudJune 2, 2010 - 2:04 am
If you’ve ever lost your wallet, you know that terrible feeling of anxiety when you think about everything you have to replace. But, never mind that dreaded trip to the DMV for a new license, your lost credit cards are now in line to end up in someone else’s hands. The result – unauthorized charges that constitute credit card fraud. So what are credit card companies doing to protect their cardholders from fraud? Let’s take a look at three ways your credit card company is making sure you remain a satisfied customer and not a victim of criminal activity.
3 Digit Codes
The three digit code on the back of your credit cards is probably your first line of defense against credit card fraud. This series of numbers uniquely identifies a card as belonging to a specific owner. Located on the back of the card, you can find it on the signature line. This measure is especially helpful when making purchases online or over the phone. The merchant will usually ask for this code before the transaction goes through. The code is then validated by the merchant and the charge is then authorized. As a further measure of protection, the merchant is not allowed to save codes. In the case of a criminal having your card and thus having knowledge of your three digit code, below is another way you are protected.
Real Time Fraud Monitoring
Many credit card companies have dedicated teams of professionals that provide a type of “surveillance” on your credit card activity 24 hours a day. If this sounds scary, it should be for anyone looking to make unauthorized purchases at your expense. Suspicious activity is flagged and charges are put on hold until the credit card company contacts you to verify the legitimacy of the transaction. One such credit card company takes account monitoring to a new level by actually monitoring black market sites that sell stolen information, as well as public records sites to ensure their cardholder’s credit card information is not listed for criminal use. Real time fraud monitoring has the potential to stop fraud in its track by sounding an alarm to a merchant and ultimately to the police.
In addition to monitoring your credit card activity, credit card companies want you to be aware of suspicious charges immediately. Many card holders have the opportunity to be notified of possible credit card fraud via an automatic phone call, text message or email.
Everyday tech savvy criminals are seeking new ways to steal credit card information and to make you their next victim. Contact your credit card providers to learn about more features or services that are available to protect you from fraud.