Christmas credit card safety

Credit and debit cards traditionally take a pounding over the festive period and it’s often easy to miss fraudulent transactions.

Banking systems are now incredibly sophisticated; often picking up fraudulent activity on accounts before customers notice anything is amiss. Cards transactions that deviate from your usual shopping patterns should trigger a call from your card provider, so it’s important to make sure that all your contact details are up-to-date.

Even with this safety measure, it’s critical to remain vigilant and follow these security tips:

1. Guard your PIN and internet banking passwords. Don’t reveal your details to anyone, even if they claim to be from your bank. Banks have measures to confirm your identity and will never ask you to reveal your details.

2. Always check your statements, even though it can be tedious when you have a lot of transactions. The quicker that you advise your bank of anything untoward, the more likely they will refund any money lost.

3. Keep your bank up-to-date with contact numbers and advise them of your travel plans, especially if you’re going overseas. Banks will often put a stop on cards if there are irregular transactions.

4. Have the details of your cards in a safe place, if you lose one, it will speed up the process of reporting it missing.

5. Shops can be hectic at this time of year and it’s easy to leave without taking your card. Make sure that you have it in your possession before you leave the shop.

6. Make sure your card is secure; don’t even leave it lying around at home. If you’re expecting a new card, keep a check on your letterbox and advise your bank if it’s not received.

7. Review your credit limit, there’s no point in having more spending power available on your card if you’ll never use it. This will also limit your liability should anything happen to your card.

8. Dispose of card receipts securely, never leave them behind in a store or throw them in a bin without destroying them first.

9. If an ATM looks suspicious, don’t use it. Similarly, if there is anyone hanging around the ATM, be more vigilant.

10. Keep your card in sight, don’t allow it to be taken away in a restaurant or shop, this is when skimming can occur.

Do you have any tales of credit card fraud?

Related articles:
Common credit card mistakes
Is your credit card being skimmed

Written by Debbie McTaggart

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