Five Tips to Help Protect you Against Credit Card Fraud

Credit card fraud is extremely prevalent in South Africa, with many fraudsters incorporating new, intelligent methods and techniques for getting a hold of your PIN. It is, therefore, very important for you to learn how to avoid falling victim to these crimes. Below are five expert tips to help protect both you and your financial wellbeing.

Make a habit of checking your credit card statements

The number one rule of thumb when it comes to avoiding credit card fraud is to remain vigilant at all times. This is not only true when using your card – it also refers to ensuring that you keep up to date with your statements. This is because a thief could manage to get a hold of your details without you knowing about it and then proceed to make a few purchases using this information. Unfortunately, if these indiscretions are not picked up and reported quickly, your bank may not be able to help you remedy the situation as you had hoped. With this mind, you might also want to set up notifications that will be sent to your cell phone whenever a transaction is made using any one of your credit cards.

Educate yourself

Understanding the different ways in which criminals can obtain your PIN will make it less likely for you to fall victim to their scams. In general, there are three main types of credit card fraud. Firstly, good old fashioned theft where the criminal steals the card itself. Secondly, fraud by using a handheld skimming device – these devices are often placed into the card slots of ATMs. And, lastly, shoulder surfing – this is when fraudsters obtain your PIN by looking over your shoulder when you are drawing money or making a purchase in a store.

Be cautious

It is essential that you remain aware of the whereabouts of your card at all times. If you have used it to buy something, make certain that you get it back immediately and that you put it away securely in your purse or wallet. Along with this, it is important that you do not lend your card to a friend or family member, that you memorise your PIN (do not write it down), and that you always keep it a secret.

Understand the potential dangers associated with online shopping

If you enjoy shopping online, make sure you do so only on secure, reputable websites that offer a safe payment gateway. Without safety features like 3D Secure, you could fall victim to phishing scams and other scary traps.

Report lost or stolen cards immediately

If you ever lose your credit card, if it is ever stolen, or even if you suspect that someone has managed to get a hold of your PIN, it is important that you report this to your bank immediately. In doing so, you will be able to stop the fraud before it happens. If the card itself is still in your possession but you are suspicious for whatever reason, log into your online banking facility and change your PIN.

Preventing credit card fraud is relatively simple when you know what to look out for. So keep your cards close at hand, remain vigilant at all times and report any incidences to your bank as they happen. By following these straightforward tips, you will be sure to avoid falling victim to any potential fraud or scams.
African Bank provides access to affordable, responsible and convenient credit to improve clients’ standard of living. At African Bank, clients have access to a flexible range of credit options tailored to meet their unique financial needs, from quick loans and credit cards to funeral plans or even help with debt consolidation. African Bank is an authorised financial services provider and a registered credit provider (NCRCP5).

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