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Types of credit card fraud and how you can avoid them

  • Highlights

  • Pre-empt pickpocketing by storing your credit card securely

  • Avoid skimming by not swiping at unverified vendors

  • Prevent phishing by transacting only via legitimate portals

  • Opt for a credit card with a zero-fraud liability cover to avoid cyber crime

Credit cards are an easier, safer and, in some ways, a more rewarding option than debit cards or cash. You can swipe them around the world, enjoy discounts at special partner outlets, and avail of rewards points and bonuses. However, that doesn’t mean they’re not susceptible to the occasional fraudulent charge. Here are some of the most common ways in which your credit card could fall prey to unauthorised activity, along with the ways in which you can avoid them.

1. Pickpocketing or physical theft

The most obvious way your credit card could be compromised is through theft. Make sure your card is kept safely in your wallet at all times, and beware of pickpockets when you’re out and about. If you’re travelling abroad and choose to leave one or more of your cards in your hotel room, a common practice in case you’re travelling with replacement or back-up cards, make sure they’re in a safe or locked up in your suitcase. In the event that your credit card is stolen or lost, make sure you report the theft to your issuer as soon as you become aware of it.

This will help you pre-empt any fraudulent charges and avoid the hassle of contesting numerous false charges.

2. Skimming card information

A less obvious way that your credit card could be compromised is through skimming, which is the act of stealing the card information rather than the card itself. A card can be skimmed either by swiping it through an illicit card-reader or copying out the information manually. When your card information is skimmed, you will not realise it until you are presented with a charge you know you didn’t make. To prevent skimming, make sure you don’t allow your card to be taken out of your line of sight, and don’t swipe it at unverified tellers. It is also important that you receive receipts of all transactions on your phone, so that you are instantly notified of a false charge and are able to report it immediately.

Additional Read: 7 Reasons You Are Smarter with a Credit Card

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3. Phishing and other scams

Phishing is the act of soliciting card information from you personally. Many scammers pose as insurance agents or other marketers on the phone, and convince you to provide your card information under the pretext of making a transaction. Do not, under any circumstances, provide any information over the phone or online to an unverified agent. Ensure that all phone and web transactions are made through a legitimate portal only.

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4. Carding or cyber-attacks

The most serious and damaging manner in which your card information could be compromised is carding, in which hackers hack into payment servers and steal thousands of accounts’ worth of information. While there are limits to what you, as a customer, can do to protect your information against a cyber-attack, it is important that you are fully aware of your credit card issuer’s policies on cybercrime. Make it a point to opt for a credit card that takes its security seriously and offers you maximum safety. The Bajaj Finserv RBL Bank SuperCard is one such credit card that is equipped with in-hand security and comes with a zero-fraud liability cover to protect you from threats of cybercrime, so you know your security is a priority.

Protecting your card against fraudulent activity isn’t difficult; it just means being aware of the various ploys fraudsters may use, and making it a point to stay ahead of them. With the right information, and the right credit card company, you can rest assured your money is in good hands. To get a credit card that offers you both safety and numerous rewards like a fuel surcharge waiver, discounts on movie tickets, airport lounge access and an instant loan, look no further than the Bajaj Finserv RBL Bank SuperCard. Check your pre-approved credit card offer and get started today!

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