Even with greater consumer awareness about credit card fraud, identity theft continues to rise as thieves develop more advanced methods of obtaining card numbers. To avoid fraud and reduce damage to your credit score, make sure you practice these basic security tips.
1. Check your credit card statement regularly, and always report any transaction that you did not make. Identity thieves will often make a very small purchase, usually for just a few dollars, to test the validity of the card number. If the transaction is successful, they will then make numerous fraudulent purchases. Be sure to report any suspicious transactions immediately.
2. Use a prepaid card instead of a credit card for online purchases. With a credit card, an identity thief can make unlimited purchases until they reach your credit limit. A prepaid card can minimize the amount of charges you might be liable for.
3. Make sure your card has a Protection Guarantee for unauthorized purchases. If your card is lost or stolen, you do not want to be held liable for unauthorized purchases. Some cards, like the Vision Prepaid Card, will not only remove unauthorized charges, but will also extend a certain amount of credit for you to use while the unauthorized charges are resolved.
4. Keep your credit and prepaid cards secured. Don’t let others have access to them, and don’t carry more cards in your wallet than you need. If your wallet is stolen or misplaced, you don’t want thieves to have access to all your credit cards. Don’t leave them exposed on restaurant tables or store counters. This prevents others from seeing and possibly using your card number.