Avoiding credit card fraud
It's not always possible to prevent credit card or charge card fraud from happening. But you can take a few steps to make it more difficult for a crook to capture your card numbers. Here are some tips to help protect you from credit and charge card fraud.
- Sign your cards as soon as they arrive.
- Carry your cards separately from your wallet. Try a zippered compartment, a business card holder, or another small pouch.
- Keep a record of your account numbers, their expiration dates, and the phone number and address of each company in a secure place.
- Keep an eye on your card during the transaction, and get it back as quickly as possible.
- Void incorrect receipts.
- Destroy carbons.
- Save receipts to compare with billing statements.
- Open bills promptly and reconcile accounts monthly, just as you would your checking account.
- Report any questionable charges promptly and in writing to the card issuer.
- Notify card companies in advance of a change in address.
- Lend your cards to anyone.
- Leave cards or receipts lying around.
- Sign a blank receipt. When you sign a receipt, draw a line through any blank spaces above the total.
- Write your account number on a postcard or on the outside of an envelope.
- Give out your account number over the phone unless you're making the call to a company that you know is reputable. If you have questions about a company, check it out with your local consumer protection office or Better Business Bureau.