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How to prevent Credit Card fraud?
Credit card fraud/s have become so rampant that it is does not anymore evoke the kind of interest it used to! Everyday banks and finance companies face credit card frauds resulting which they have set up entire departments just to look into preventing these frauds. With usage of credit cards online, increased travel around the world, credit cards have been the main target of hackers and thieves.
No more does a smart robber needs to enter a bank to rob it; all that can be done completely at the comfort of the houses they are in! All they would need is your credit card details. And believe me, the underground credit card fraud industry is thriving. It seems that these hackers are always one step ahead of the law enforcement or the banks. With these details in mind, how do your simple steps will prevent a credit card fraud happening to you?
There are some simple steps that you can take to minimise your risk of credit card fraud:
- When you receive your credit card always check that it is sealed and that the seal is not tampered with.
- Sign on the back of your card immediately after receiving it.
- At times, monitor your credit card account, either on the Internet or through call centres.
- Subscribing to email and mobile alerts will make tracking of card usage easy for you. Wherever you use the card, always ensure that it is swiped in your presence.
- Always keep track of your transactions while you travel, be it within or outside the country.
- If possible, avoid using your credit card at cyber cafés and wherever there is wireless connection as the information you provide over the Internet for your credit card could fall into wrong hands as the Internet connection at such places are always or most likely monitored.
- Always keep the card account numbers and the PIN numbers in a confidential place to avoid misuse of your credit card.
- Keep checking your credit cards from time to time to ensure that none are missing.
- Make sure you destroy and dispose all documents mentioning the card number, such as copies of airline tickets, bills, travel itineraries, etc., so that nobody can misuse the information.
- If you receive an email or a phone call informing you about suspicious activity on your account, give no information over the Internet or phone. Instead, take down the credit card representative’s name and call him/her back at the customer service numbers given to you by your credit card companies.
- Keep a track of your most recent credit card transactions. You should be able to tell a customer care company representative what your last five transactions were.
- Also, it is a good thing to be on the lookout for small, unusual transactions. Sometimes, the bad guys might test an account at a place like a convenience store or at a petrol station.
- If a carbon paper is used during a credit card transaction, immediately destroy it after use. For there are chances of somebody misusing it to forge your signature.
- Never ever respond to any ‘scam’ e-mails requesting your credit card number and other information.
- If your card is lost, stolen or you suspect fraudulent use, call your credit card prvider’s 24-hour hotline to block your card as soon as possible. The bank or finance company will block its use, and you won’t be responsible for any charges made by thieves after you have reported it to the credit card company.
- Always destroy your old cards by cutting them into pieces.
- If possible, choose a credit card that includes your picture and signature at the back of the card as this is a good way to discourage misuse of your card.
- Always ensure that your personal details are up to date with your credit card company. This is to ensure that the credit card company can call you as soon as they see any suspicious pattern of charges on your credit card.
- Make sure to use extra authentication steps while shopping online. I use Rakbank credit card and whenever I have to use the card online for any transaction, I have to enter what is called OTP – One Time Password which is sent to my Mobile Phone or Email. This has secured my online transactions.
By taking all these steps you can help prevent misuse of your credit card to a huge extent. Being proactive in your approach to protect yourself can solve 99% of all the problems for you.
What are your tips for preventing credit card fraud?? Let me know in comments below.