Credit cards provide customers with many benefits like convenience, expenditure tracking, financial liberty, and other added perks. However, they are not immune to security issues and frauds. Data breaches, identity thefts, and other credit card frauds are not very uncommon to hear.
Hence, it becomes imperative to be aware of card safety practices to avoid thefts or be at the receiving end of any malpractice.
Be Careful with Card Details
You should never share your card or its security details like card number, PIN, etc. with anyone. Even during a transaction, you should enter all the details yourself and not let your card out of sight. It would also help if you do not choose a PIN that is easy to guess and keep changing it regularly.
In general, use credit cards over debit cards. Since it is the card issuer’s money, there are more security options provided. With debit cards, it is more or less your responsibility.
Even after transactions, tear your bank-related documents like ATM slips or canceled checks, as they contain very sensitive information that could be used by fraudsters. Remember to use a shredder instead of simply tossing them into the bin.
Beware of Fraudsters
You should always look out for crooks and thieves who may be sneaking in to have a look at your pin or taking photographs with their phones. This is especially common around ATMs.
They may also skim your card by pretending to bump into you and picking up your card for you. This is a way to copy your card details on another forged card. Skimmers are very common at gas pumps and refill stations.
Do not share your card details with unverified representatives. Identity thieves play upon your emotion to trick you into sharing your details. They could pretend to be lottery providers or your electricity company threatening to shut your connection. They want you to panic. Always contact an organization with its established phone number and website.
One of the most critical things to remember with a credit card is using them at safe portals. You should avoid using them on suspicious websites. Always protect your computer against viruses and malware and check security certifications of the e-retailer before transactions. Check out the URLs and domain names of sites before proceeding.
Also, you should avoid using your card for online purchases from a public computer as it is not as safe as your PC. Beware of hackers while purchasing with public Wi-Fi, as in a coffee shop.
You should look out for SMS alerts after transactions and check your credit card statement at the end of every month. Print your credit card receipt or take a screenshot for future use.
In Case of Misuse
When you get a message of your card being used by somebody else, you should immediately inform your bank to get the card blocked before any further misuse. Banks usually investigate the case of card theft in a period of two to three months.
Using a credit card can be highly beneficial if you keep in mind all the safety keys and protect your card details. You can use payment gateways for an additional barrier and other security software for extra protection. Keep reviewing credit reports and monitor even small transactions even if they seem trivial.