Data breaches, identity theft, and credit card fraud have all become more common in recent years, and with most of us doing more business online, this isn’t likely to change. With this in mind, you need to learn how to protect yourself.
Here’s what you need to know about credit card security and how to make sure your cards stay safe:
Reach out to an alternative contact
If you receive a suspicious email or phone call from someone claiming to be from a legitimate company, cease contact and locate an official contact email or phone number to reach back out. Customer support can verify if the initial message was legit.
Monitor your payment card accounts
Whether you use credit or debit, keep an eye on your card statements to check for any fraudulent purchases. Immediately notify your bank of any suspicious activity.
Sign up for alerts
Set up alerts with your issuer to catch fraudulent spending. Being aware of suspicious activity as soon as it occurs will give you enough time to contact your card issuer and cancel the card before more damage is done. Look into the security features your issuer offers; some provide apps that can alert you in real time of card activity.
Never sign in to accounts on unsecured Wi-Fi
If public Wi-Fi is your only option, refrain from logging in to any websites that manage personal information, such as banking and shopping sites. Turn off the automatic connectivity feature on your device, to prevent yourself from accidentally connecting to a dangerous network. If you need to log in using public Wi-Fi, consider using a VPN.
Shred any mail that contains personal info
Always properly dispose of any mail you receive that includes personal account numbers, Tax Registration Numbers, or addresses. Shredding it is the most effective way of ensuring that fraudsters can’t take advantage of your mail.