Credit card securityMarch 14, 2011 - 7:14 am
Credit card fraud is an increasingly worrying occurrence with even the most careful individual being susceptible.
I personally have been unfortunate enough to be a credit card fraud victim and knowing the hassle and inconvenience it caused I vowed to know exactly how to protect myself from fraudsters in the future.
Having researched carefully into the matter and spoken to advisors from some of the leading banks I have compiled some key points to protecting yourself from credit card fraud.
Using your card in person
This may sound simple but it is absolutely essential that you never disclose your pin to others. This includes covering the pin keypad when entering your pin at a till or if withdrawing cash from a cash point.
Always check your credit card statement against receipts of your purchase, especially when paying for items where a tip is added to the bill. Then make sure you have completely destroyed your credit card purchase receipts using a shredder. These receipts contain vital information for fraudsters such as your name, card number and expiry date. With receipts showing slightly different things – a collection of receipts could hold all the data needed!! This principle also applies to any postal correspondence you receive containing any card information such as statements or letters.
When paying for an item always make sure that your card remains in sight. It only takes a few seconds to duplicate a credit card (known as skimming) and all your information is taken and copied into a new card that can be used at will later.
Paying for items purchased online with your credit card is actually the safest way to buy. The card is always in sight stopping the risk of skimming and your credit card provider covers you automatically for any problems such as your order going missing or the company going bust.
When shopping online make sure that the site that you are on is secure. Your computer should automatically tell you if the webpage is not secure but before entering any card information make sure the web browser either starts as https:// or has a padlock icon. This means that fraudsters cannot view the page where you are entering your credit card details.
When online make sure that you enter a website by entering the url address directly instead of clicking on a link to ensure that you are not directed to any fraudster’s site that has copied your bank, credit card provider or shopping company’s website.
Many banks and credit card providers have a fraud detection department which means that if you are unfortunate enough to fall victim to fraudsters it should be spotted and stopped quickly. You should receive a phone call from your provider when any unusual transactions occur asking if this was you.
All providers offer customers 24 hour hotlines where you can report your card lost or stolen as well as any suspicious activity. Make sure you have this number to hand just in case.