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The only way to prevent credit card fraud is through awareness. There are tons of ways for people to steal your credit card information, so you need to be on high alert at all times. Otherwise, you could find yourself owing a lot of money that you didn't spend.
One of the main ways that credit card fraud happens is because of shopping habits. There are many ways in which fraud can occur, simply because of shopping for a few things. The internet is one of the leading ways in which a person can get a hold of your credit card number, however local merchants can be equally to blame.
Protecting Your Credit Card
Don't give your credit card to anyone. There have been many times when someone gives their card to a friend for a purchase and things have gone wrong. Keep your card and to help prevent problems, write "See ID" on the back of your card instead of signing it. This will ensure that the cashier checks for ID rather than compares a signature. It's much easier to forge a John Hancock over a physical appearance.
Be wary of your credit card being gone for too long. At restaurants and other locations where you have to hand your card over to someone and they disappear, question it if they are gone too long. There have been reports in which people have made copies of a person's card. If you think this is the case, immediately call your bank once you have gained control of your card again to alert the bank "just in case." When it comes to your card, you can never be too careful.
Scams are happening every single day to millions of people. These occur on the phone, over the internet and even in person. Don't assume that everyone is legit. There are many people who make their living on scamming other people through dishonest acts. There are ways to catch it and be more aware, though.
Different Scams Going On
On the internet, there is something known as a phishing site. You may get an email that looks like it's from your bank or another online account asking for either your credit card number, bank account, or asking you to sign in with your username and password. Most banks don't ask you to do this.
Whatever you do, don't follow the link's request. They will gain access to personal information that could lead to theft. You can identify such sites by the web address. They will have extra words in it. For example, your bank website is bank.com. A phishing site may be bank.scsc.com.
There are also phone scams. A person may call pretending to be a collection agency and ask you to settle a debt with a credit card number over the phone. You can counteract this by asking for their number and calling them back.
Then compare the number to the number on your statement. No match, no account number. Another is one that is suggesting that they are taking donations for a worthy cause. Again, no company would have you give money over the phone. If you think it's legit, ask them to mail you a bill for it.
At the end of the day, it comes down to this: don't give out your cell phone number. There are various ways you can ensure that a company is legit:
- Check for phishing site
- Take a message
- Ask lots of questions
- Have them confirm your account number or personal info before you give over any info
- Ask them to email or mail a bill/confirmation
Once a person or company has your credit card number, they can make purchases, use your identity, and more. Protecting your card means protecting your identity. There are many different kinds of credit card fraud around, however, it is important to keep your credit card company aware of any potential issues you may have encountered. Many new credit cards offer fraud protection, but it typically only works if you are following basic rules.
Credit card fraud costs Americans millions of dollars every year. There are various ways to protect yourself against falling victim, however they must be followed every time.