I tend to be blasé about my things. I leave my handbag in the most ridiculous of places, I don’t think too hard about covering my pin when I EFPOS at the supermarket and I log onto my Netbank on the train when I’m bored. I know there are a lot of people like who don’t think about the risks we take every day when it comes to guarding our finances.
Credit card fraud and theft is probably one of the most common forms of attack, right after the handbag-being-stolen-on-street variety. Often it happens when you’re travelling, and your insurance or bank covers it. Generally the bank will cover it anyway, once they’ve satisfied themselves its legitimate.
Even though there are ways to redress the situation, credit card fraud is still a risk, nuisance and cause to worry. Here’s some tips on how to protect yourself, thanks to Scambuster for the inspiration.
Here are the top 10 tips for protecting yourself from credit card fraud.
- Try not to let the card out of your sight, and make sure it gets returned pronto. Giving your credit card to a waiter in a restaurant seems normal, but if they’re a bit crooked, it’s the easiest thing in the world to get all the details and go on a spending spree on eBay.
- Don’t’ give your credit card details out over the phone or email unless you’ve initiated the conversation. No legit company would ask for those details over the phone/email.
- Check the website is secure before you type in those numbers. Somewhere on the page will be a sign that it is secure. If you can’t see it, don’t buy it.
- Sign your credit cards as soon as you get them. Walking around with your card unsigned is asking for a whole heap of trouble to head your way fast.
- Don’t keep the PIN on it, near it or with it. Don’t disguise your PIN as a random birthday in your wallet, because people are hip to that groove and will probably strip you of your cash before you can blink. You might have trouble with insurance as well in that situation.
- Don’t leave your card lying around. Obviously.
- Try to keep the numbers down. If you don’t need the card, don’t carry it with you. The more cards you have, the more chances you are giving those less upstanding members of our society to take advantage of your optimistic view of human nature.
- Look at your credit card bills. I know its hard, and something to be avoided at all costs, but if there are charges on there that you weren’t responsible for, you need to know about it quickly. Keep receipts and check them against the statement every month.
- Don’t sign blank credit card receipts. How often do you actually check the receipt you sign? If your answer is ‘not often’, you need to rethink your approach. Blank sections of a receipt can be used to add extra charges, which you will pay for because your signature will be down the bottom.
- Don’t lend your credit card to anyone. No matter how nice, no matter how trustworthy. Keep your friends close and your credit cards closer.
How do you protect yourself from credit card fraud?
Have you ever been a victim of fraud?