Credit card fraud was the most frequent type of fraud reported in 2020 according to the federal trade commission. And the amount lost annually to credit card fraud is a staggering $149 million. While it’s vital to ensure the security of their financial accounts, if you do end up being a victim of credit card fraud then you should know what to do next. And what would be the best practices for credit card fraud prevention?
Difference Between Credit Card Fraud vs. Identity Theft
Both of these types of fraud are similar, but identity fraud is broader in reach. An identity thief steals your personal information, such as your Social Security Number, Opens a new account, gets a loan approved, and files for tax returns.
Credit card fraud is a different type of identity theft that happens when your credit card is used for unauthorized purchases. Customers who rarely check their credit card account online may notice some anomalies in the account that you didn’t make. While the majority of credit card issuers offer zero liability on fraudulent purchases, it doesn’t mean that you will turn a blind eye. This also raises the question of how banks prevent credit card fraud.
There are no particular credit card fraud prevention strategies that provide you total credit card fraud protection, but some small actions can lead to an increased risk of fraud, thus you should take time out of your schedule to learn how to secure yourself.
How to Prevent Credit Card Frauds?
There are several methods and techniques that fraudsters utilize to steal your personally identifiable information. Fraud reports for 2020 increased over the previous year which isn’t surprising because most of the world went towards a digital transformation. Bad actors always look forward to weak moments for a customer to steal personal information.
Sometimes, being aware of the red flags and things that seem suspicious will help you make better decisions and avoid credit card fraud. Here are some common things to look out for:
1. Don’t Use Unsecure Websites
This is something that you can easily do. If any shopping site is secure you’ll see a padlock on the top left side before the address bar. Also, the web address will begin with HTTPS. Do not enter credit card numbers on a website that you see isn’t secure. And let’s be honest, if a business isn’t offering data security, you shouldn’t invest your time in it. Not using unsecure websites is the primary credit card fraud prevention.
2. Beware of Phishing Scams
Phishing scams are very common and they can happen on the phone, email, texts, or anywhere else. The scammers might call and pretend they are from some government body and try to gather your personal information.
Scams as of today are very sophisticated, customers often get scam emails from what seems like their bank. If the email requests you reply with your credit card account number, you know it’s fake.
3. Beware of What You Post on Social Media
While social media is extremely exciting, it does have its downfalls. Fraudsters keep deriving new methods of stealing personal information through social media. Kids often end up sharing sensitive data on social media without being aware of it. To prevent credit card fraud, parents need to have a serious talk about what they share on social media.
Anything you post about your personal life can be pieced together by fraudsters to build a profile for financial fraud.
4. Use Mobile Payment Apps
There are some chances that your card information may be skimmed at an in-store card reader, but it can still happen. Thus, it is better to increase the protection of credit cards by using mobile payment apps such as PayPal.
All the mobile payment apps use a technology named tokenization, which allows you to pay without exposing the actual card number. This way, your account stays safe from fraudsters even if the transaction data is exposed.
5. Don’t Save Credit Card Information Online
This may take some time to master, you have to stop, find your credit card number, and type it in every time you wish to make a transaction. It doesn’t matter if it’s a retailer that you trust, a data breach can put your private information at risk. This is an effective method of decreasing the risk of fraud.
6. Use a Password Manager
One of the primary rules with using passwords is that you shouldn’t use the same password or a combination of the same password over and over again. If a fraudster gets access to one of your passwords, then they’ll be able to gain access to all your accounts.
A password manager can help you generate and remember complicated passwords easily. Having a variety of complicated passwords can assist you in saving yourself from financial fraud.
7. Don’t Use Public WiFi for Financial Transactions
Public WiFi is riddled with fraudsters, trying to steal any information that they can find. If you conduct any kind of financial transaction on public WiFi, you’ll be vulnerable to hackers because these networks are often unencrypted. Whatever financial transactions you need to conduct you should do it on your personal network.
You can also use a virtual private network or VPN to encrypt the public WiFi. A VPN encrypts your incoming and outgoing traffic thus securing the transactions.
How Banks Can Prevent Credit Card Fraud?
While customers don’t have to bear the burden of credit card fraud, financial institutions have to take the brunt of the fraud. To prevent this type of fraud, FIs need to comply with KYC regulations and AML regulations, continuously monitor the transactions, and utilize technologies.
Technologies such as DIRO online document verification solutions can help financial institutions stay on top of acts of fraud.