How to Avoid Credit Card Fraud and Identity TheftJanuary 6, 2011 - 6:30 pm
Author: Sufi M and his staff operate The Glaring Facts, one of the leading and densely populated websites involving psychology, media-related material, history of science, and money management. We are certain you will find something that will fascinate you.
Credit card fraud is one of the most leading issues in America today. According to the Unisys Security Index (March, 2009):
Credit and debit card fraud is the No. 1 fear of Americans in the midst of the global financial crisis. Concern about fraud supersedes that of terrorism, computer and health viruses and personal safety.
Naturally, one of the most devastating incidents that could happen to us is our identity being stolen, worse if it is used for huge monetary gain. This leaves you wondering: how you can protect yourself from credit card fraud? Credit card frauds come through all communication channels: by phone, e-mail, letters, etc…. I’m sure you’ve seen one of those wonderful e-mails insisting that you give up your personal information for a huge lump of money you can get in some foreign bank. Credit card fraud is often superseded by identity theft, an inevitable byproduct of gross personal negligence and overall bad personal security. In this post, I will explain how you can avoid credit card fraud and subsequently identity theft.
Here are some things you should DO to protect yourself from identity theft:
- Never forget to sign the back of your credit card. When I used to work in retail, I often noticed credit cards that were never signed. Although many cards say that a credit card remains invalid unless signed, but in reality no one will track whether or not your card is signed but you. If your credit card is signed, than people may be able to verify if it’s been falsified.
- Destroy CC (carbon copies) of credit card information as soon as you receive them.
- Separate your credit cards from your wallet in case you lose your wallet! These days purses come with separate card compartments, an ideal place to put pertinent information like your credit cards.
- Make sure to have a record of your credit card statements in case there is something on there that’s just not right. If you find something not adding up, contact your credit card company right away
- Shred through a paper shredder, or with your fingers turn receipts containing any personal data that can be used to steal your identity into tiny atoms.
Here’s what you MUST NOT EVER DO while thinking you’re protecting yourself from credit card fraud and identity theft:
- Refrain from providing your account info, social security numbers and credit card data to anybody!
- Keep your cards close, don’t lend them to anyone.
- Refrain from keeping your credit cards lying around
- Don’t ever give personal information, especially if it comes through a request over the phone. So many scams come from over the phone!
- Don’t forget the cashiers, they’re known for duplicity. Keep a close eye on them, for they might make a duplicate to keep your personal information.
Credit card fraud and identity theft are one of the most disconcerting issues today and will be for a long time. According to Javelin Strategy & Research (2010), “The number of U.S. identity fraud victims rose 12 percent to 11.1 million adults last year, the highest level since the survey began in 2003” (Identity Fraud Survey Report). There are ways to avoid credit card fraud and identity theft, you just have to make sure you’re doing everything in your power to prevent this from happening to you.