These days it seems like credit card fraud is becoming almost as commonplace as littering. However, thanks to a host of new laws, consumers actually experience a greater level of protection from the results of credit card fraud than ever before. If you do find yourself the victim of credit card fraud, there are steps you can take to protect your information. Follow these 7 tips, brought to you by ADS Guards, a trusted security company in Hayward.
1. Call Your Credit Card Issuer the Second You Notice a Card Missing
Even if you are not sure if you simply misplaced your card or if it has actually been stolen, call anyway. It may be a hassle to get a new card sent to you, but it’s less of a hassle than having to face fraudulent credit charges. If it has been stolen, the longer you wait, the more of a chance you give thieves to use it.
2. If You Still Have Your Card, Have It Cancelled and Reissued
If you notice a purchase on one of your statements that you didn’t make and you still have your credit card in your possession, you should not only call and cancel that card, but all of the other cards you carry with you. In many cases, thieves don’t actually steal your card but use a device that scans the magnetic strip on the back of your card, where all the banking information is contained. This means you can have your credit card information stolen without it ever leaving your possession. Chances are, if they got one card, they got them all.
3. Shred or Cut Up Your Card
Theoretically, once you cancel a card, it should be unusable anymore, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Once you have cut up or shredded your cards, it’s important to not throw them all away in the same place where they can be gathered and put back together again. If you throw a few pieces in several different trash bins, you greatly reduce your chances of someone being able to find them all and put them back together again.
4. File a Police Report
In some cases this may not be necessary, but some credit card companies will not credit your account for purchases not made by you unless a police report has been filed. In addition, police will not be looking for a perpetrator if you don’t file a report.
5. Upgrade to Chip Cards
Currently, chip cards in the US still utilize the same magnetic strip that stores all your data, which can be stolen. However, chips can help prevent your data being stolen by hackers from stores where you make purchases.
6. Invest in a Secure Credit Card Sleeve
Lined credit card sleeves protect the information contained in the magnetic strip on the back of your credit card from being stolen electronically. For less than $10 you can buy a set of these sleeves.
At ADS Guards, we believe it’s important for people to know how to protect their personal information, and it’s just as important to be protected against other types of harm and damage. If you’re looking to hire security in Hayward, we provide highly trained guards for residential and commercial properties. Call 1-800-794-1550 today for a free quote.