The term credit card fraud usually refers to theft or deceit, involving credit cards, and attempting to withdraw funds or purchase goods without the authorisation of the card owner. The most common ways to conduct such fraud are forging the legitimate cards, stealing the card before it has been received by the owner, stealing, appropriation of lost cards, identity theft and fraudulent transactions, conducted with the card number over the phone or internet.
In order to avoid credit card fraud it is important to remember a set of rules to follow. Firstly, never lend the card to anyone. Never leave the card or receipts unattended. Try to avoid signing blank receipts and in case it is absolutely necessary, make sure to cross all the empty fields. Do not write the number of the credit card or PIN code in an unsecure place. Finally, do not disclose any credit card information over the phone, unless the recipient is a reputable company.
Certain good practices, when followed, may make it more difficult to conduct fraud with your credit card. One of the first measures to be taken upon the receipt of the credit card is signing it, in order to make it more difficult for the potential fraudsters to make purchases with it. Secondly, make sure not to keep the card in your wallet, as it increases chances of loss or stealth. When giving your card to someone, don’t lose sight of the card in order to protect the information from being taken by dishonest personnel of a legitimate entity. Whenever filling the receipt incorrectly, make sure to void it. Checking transactions and keeping all the receipt helps to recognize fraudulent purchases, even if the amount withdrawn was not significant. Finally, communicate with the card company regarding any issue, being it a loss of the card or a change in the card holder’s address.
Credit Card fraud cost is approximately equal to $500 mln a year, as reported by the US Department of Homeland Security. It is not always feasible to prevent a fraud, but being careful is the only way to reduce the chances of becoming a victim of fraudsters.
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