I once asked a bank manager what the best way to avoid credit card fraud was after becoming a victim myself. Instead of offering advice on a method of how I could avoid credit card fraud, he said, “You can’t avoid credit card fraud. It is just a part of life.”
I now bank elsewhere.
The real answer he should have given me was to report it to the government on this website. Thousands of people go through credit card fraud, be it from a shady merchant or nasty thieves. The great Target heist notwithstanding, over $500 million is estimated to be stolen every year as a result of credit card fraud. Despite these terrifying numbers, fraud has fallen 28% since 2010.
By taking the proper precautions, you may be surprised at how easy it is to avoid credit card fraud. Let’s looks at some of the most common forms of fraud and how we can avoid credit card fraud altogether.
Types of Fraud
The most prevalent type of credit card fraud is through online retailers where the credit card is not present. Never save your credit card information into a browser’s history, even if you are the only one who uses that device. The most common story of credit card fraud is where the device, be it a laptop or cell phone, is stolen and the thief has access to all of that stored data.
Watch your mail. By recovering new credit cards, social security numbers, and other information from other people’s mail boxes, identity thieves are able to use this information and can ruin your credit – and bank account!
Avoid Credit Card Fraud
Think your paper shredder will help you avoid credit card fraud? Identity thieves often piece together scraps of paper in order to obtain sensitive information.
To avoid credit card fraud, spread out the shredded paper from important documents into multiple trash bags.
Recovering from Fraud
Credit card companies are usually pretty good at reversing fraudulent transaction. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t actively avoid credit card fraud altogether. By taking preventative measures, such as logging out of your online shopping and banking accounts when you are finished. Also, never sign into your bank account while using a server or wi-fi connection that is not secure. If you are unsure as to whether the connection you are using is secure or not, don’t risk it. Many hackers and identity thieves actively mine the history on these servers looking for credit card data, among other things.
By taking the proper security measure, you can avoid credit card fraud and save yourself not only thousands of dollars, but thousands of headaches as well.