Credit Card Fraud Harmful to Everyone

Credit Card Fraud a Growing Threat

Credit card fraud is fast becoming a nightmare to many companies and their customers. It can take on several formats, with the most common being the use of stolen cards to make purchases and the use of acquired numbers for online shopping. Although there are security measures in place to counter credit card fraud, it is still a significant danger to many people.

How Credit Card Fraud Affects Businesses

Although credit companies and banks are willing to quickly reimburse people whose cards are being used for fraud, those same institutions require the business itself to reimburse their own losses to make up for it. What this means is a business making a sale with a fraudulent card will then be contacted by the credit company and be asked to pay the losses.

This can be particularly damaging for many small businesses like florists, as a large sale made during a slow week could end up being a victim of credit card fraud, meaning that the money earned is immediately lost as a penalty. This process is termed a “chargeback” and has only negative repercussions on the business involved.

Fortunately, a chargeback only applies to a company that did not follow credit card fraud procedures to verify signatures and other customer data. Any business with a strong security system will be able to minimize the negative effects of credit card fraud with greater success.

How Credit Card Fraud Affects Customers

Credit card fraud is especially dangerous for consumers. The theft or loss of a card by malicious means results in their spending power being unwilling transferred to another individual. If unsecure purchasing channels are used, the thief can easily max out a person’s card quickly with purchases for themselves. The potential of credit card fraud is a huge financial blow to any victim.

Fortunately, most banks and credit companies are now quick to waive any charges you might have had added to your stolen card. This is part of a move to make the financial industry more customer-friendly and to generally improve relations. Despite this, however, it can still cause people a large amount of trouble and hassle while they are forced to replace their card.

In addition to this, the fact that a business is forced to pay a chargeback resulting from credit card fraud means raised prices across the board. Everyone is forced to spend more on the products they desire in order to compensate for credit card fraud and the damages it causes.

What is Being Done about Credit Card Fraud

Despite the threat that credit card fraud presents to everyone, there are fortunately a number of steps being taken to reduce its impact. Credit companies are set to release new cards that combine microchip identification with a PIN to cut back on credit card fraud. Although businesses will be forced to invest in the new technology required to read the new cards, it will help eliminate future damages.

In addition to this, many businesses now include advanced training procedures for their employees requiring them to learn how to properly guard against credit card fraud. Verifying a person’s signature, reporting suspicious behavior and even asking for photo ID are all now being done to prevent any successful credit card fraud from harming businesses and customers.

How You Can Prevent Credit Card Fraud

If you are worried about becoming a victim of credit card fraud, there are a number of safety tips to keep in mind for the future. By following these suggestions you can help lower, if not eliminate entirely, the chance of becoming a victim:

· Physical Privacy – Much like how you cover the pad when entering your PIN for a debit purchase, you should also make an effort to mask the writing of your signature from nearby eyes. This can prevent fraudsters from learning how to forge your signature. You should also immediately return your card to your wallet when it is handed back to you.

By leaving your card lying out in the open you greatly increase the chance someone will steal it or that you’ll leave it behind. It is important to protect your card during all transactions to prevent this from happening.

· Statistical Safety – When you get your credit bill every month, don’t just put it in a folder or safety deposit box. Read over all of the details to make sure that the data matches your own knowledge. If you see unusual, frequent or large purchases that raise a red flag, immediately contact your credit company.

By following these simple steps you can help reduce the risk of credit card fraud affecting you and the companies you shop at. If everyone makes an effort to keep things safe, the entire community benefits in the long run.

Copyright (c) 2008 Brant Florist

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