When it comes to credit card security I have seen both types of people. There are people who are paranoid about security and do not use credit cards at all or do not perform any online banking transactions at all. Then there are people who do not care about security at all and use credit cards to make payments online and at other places. I cannot call such users careless, but unaware could be a legitimate term for them. The right way is to take a balanced approach and use new technology and facilities in the right way and still be secure.
There is an urgent need for spreading awareness about skimming attacks and other credit card frauds before it’s too late for some of these credit card users. The new generation of scammers are improving on a daily basis and finding out new ways to steal the credit card credentials of innocent users.
Few simple guidelines one needs to follow with respect to credit/debit cards:
Do not share your credit/debit card PIN number with any body. Many times it happens that some people send someone else to remove money from an ATM as they are stuck up or busy with something else and cannot visit the ATM. To do this they also share the PIN number with the person whom they are sending and trusting. No matter how trusted the person is, sharing PIN number can be risky as we do not know how securely the person may be using or typing the number. Nobody else can be as vigilant as yourself with your credit card and its use.
If you are a regular user of ATM machines it’s always better to stick to one or few ATM machines. This will help you pay attention towards other details of the machine and see if anything is changed since you used it the last time. ATM skimming is on the rise and this works by tampering with the ATM machine with some add-on which captures credit card details. Recently a Global ATM skimming racket was busted by an European police agency. Link to the complete news is included below.
Always check your credit card bills and account statement carefully. If any transaction appears which is not carried out by you, report it to your bank immediately. Not receiving the credit card bill in your billing cycle time is also an important warning for you to check if it’s due to an accidental delay or because your billing address is changed without your notice.
Keep an eye on your credit card when you hand it over to a payment counter at any retail outlet.
Link your mobile number with your credit card account for transaction alerts. This way you can get an SMS notification every time you use your credit card. This way you will detect credit card fraud immediately if you receive credit card transactional SMS even if you have not performed any transaction on your credit card.
When using a computer to do online banking or to make a credit card purchase, it is very important that you have appropriate security software installed on your computer. Your security software should have some important features like cloud based web security and anti-phishing enabled apart from core protection features like AntiVirus, Firewall, AntiSpyware etc. Just AntiVirus protection (like cheap alternates or freeware) won’t carry all these features that we have in our Quick Heal Internet Security and Quick Heal Total Security suites. Both these products give reliable protection when it comes to online transactions.
So the next time you use your card for payment or at an ATM please be more vigilant on your part to avoid getting in trouble. Awareness is more important so spread the word to your family and friends by asking them to be more vigilant the next time they use their credit/debit card as well.