Personal Protection (MasterCard Benefits)

Credit and debit cards are part of everyday life, replacing cash and checks and making our lives a little easier. Mastercard has been providing its customers with credit cards for over 40 years and one of the finest MasterCard benefits for any individual is the personal protection that it gives.

Mastercard offer a variety of different credit cards and debit cards to meet each individuals needs. However, although each card has its own variety of benefits, all cards issued by Mastercard offer the personal protection of identity theft resolution and zero liability.

Identity Theft Resolution

For most individuals, their identity is their biggest asset. It is required to open bank accounts, apply for mortgages, and secure credit. It is also probably your most vulnerable asset too. The impact on any compromise to your identity can be severe.

Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes and occurs when someone takes your personal information without your knowledge or permission and uses it to commit fraud. People might use your name, driving licence, credit card number, social security number, bank account number – any of these to commit a fraudulent act.

These people may then get themselves a new credit card by using your personal details and even inform the card issuer of a change of address so that you will remain unaware that any fraud has taken place. Such actions will register on any credit report of yours with the onus being on you to show that a fraud has been committed.

In this technological age, many think that the internet is the main source for identity theft although studies show that online identity theft covers only approximately 11% of such cases with more than 50% resulting from stolen wallets carrying such information as social security number, driving licence, credit card purchase receipts etc.

Mastercard personal protection benefits will make sure that if such an instance happens to you, assistance is given with contacting the relevant credit organization and replacement of the card. MasterCard will also provide any customer affected by this practice with an identity theft affidavit to confirm that you have been the victim of such identity theft.

Zero Liability

This personal protection benefit means that should your card be lost or stolen, you will not be held liable or responsible for any payments or purchases made on that card, whether the transaction has been made online, in shops or by telephone as long as the following conditions are met.

First of all, the account must not be over its limit or not been used properly prior to any unauthorized purchases. The second condition is that you need to show that all reasonable care has been taken by you to avoid any unauthorised use of the card. This means that you did not either give any implied right for anyone to use your card and that you did not personally receive any financial gain from any unauthorised transaction. A third condition to benefit from zero liability is that two or more incidents of unauthorized use of your card have not been reported within a twelve month period.

Zero liability will only apply to individual cards where a PIN has not been used in the unauthorized transaction. Anyone who suspects that they may have become a victim of this crime, should contact the issuer of their MasterCard immediately.

It should also be noted that the zero liability policy will not be applicable to anyone who has a card which was issued primarily for either commercial, business, or agricultural use.

Credit or Debit Card - Which is Better?

In terms of zero liability, many fraud experts would suggest that credit cards offer better personal protection than debit cards for daily use. The reason being that that it is a better scenario to argue what your provider says you owe when you still have the money rather than when it has already been taken out of your account. Credit card fraudulent transactions are cancelled immediately with no applicable charges whereas debit card ones result in the individual being at a loss of those funds until they are replaced by the bank.

Therefore, regardless of whether you carry the Standard, Gold, or Platinum Mastercard, you can rest assured that you have the comfort and knowledge that you are covered with the benefit of personal protection against any unauthorized use of your card or in the event of someone attempting to steal your identity, the assistance from Mastercard in restoring both your credit rating and your reputation.