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Preventing Credit Card Fraud

Credit card fraud is definitely on the upswing, costing businesses billions of dollars every year. If you are the victim of fraud, you are not usually required to cover the unauthorized charges-especially if you inform the credit card company immediately after the discovery of a discrepancy. You still pay, however, because someone has to pay for the theft and the charges trickle down to consumers. Further, if you have been subject to credit card fraud before, you know how stressful it is to go through the energy and time-consuming ordeal.

Most people use credit cards regularly and so fraud is more common than most people think. The good news is that it is easy to prevent. Credit card companies are doing their part to make cards more secure. Some are displaying a photograph of the cardholder. This prevents criminals from making face-to-face purchases with a stolen card. Further, most cards have holograms and hidden images, which prevent thieves from making new cards with stolen numbers.

Regardless of these measures, credit card fraud is still rampant. Therefore, you need to protect yourself by taking the following measures:

  • Do not give your card to someone else.
  • Never write your PIN (personal identification number) on your card.
  • Carry one or two credit cards at a time only.
  • Report stolen or lost card immediately. The credit card company can cancel your credit card and number and prevent a thief from committing a crime.
  • Keep the phone numbers of credit card companies with you at all time, so that you can report an occurrence as soon as possible.
  • Shred credit card applications you receive in the mail.
  • At stores, shield your credit card from people.
  • Only give your credit card number to reputable companies.