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10 Tips to keep your credit card secure

tips to keep your credit card secure
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10 Tips to keep your credit card secure

INTRODUCTION

A Credit card is a form of digital payment method issued by your bank at your request, which is linked to your account to be used to purchase items, make payments for goods and services rendered, and also a means to withdraw money from your bank account or accounts. 

Individuals, companies’ the public uses this form of payment, and private entities as it is an easier and faster mode of payment; it becomes riskier as attackers are always devising new and more daring ways to steal your identity and credit/debit card information.  

This guide will show you 10 tips for securing your credit card.

10 tips to keep your credit card secure

Table of contents

Description

  1. Use secure and trusted sites. 
  2. Avoid using public or free Wi fi to shop or transact business.  
  3. Avoid storing your credit card details online. 
  4. Ensure that your operating system is up to date.
  5. Watch out for scams. 
  6. Don’t carry too many cards; limit it to one card. 
  7. Keep your card safe always. 
  8. Be careful with your receipts. 
  9. Use a well-known payment system to transfer funds from your account. 
  10.   Set up an alert system
  11. FAQS

Description

There are Stories of individuals, and companies, both large and small, becoming targets of data breaches hitting the news every day due to a lapse in security.

 Criminals use your unsecured credit card information to steal money from you by withdrawing money from your accounts and making payments from your account. 

In the process of criminals using a person’s credit card details, they put a financial load on that person’s account. For example, living an expensive lifestyle at another person’s expense. Such criminals are usually hackers.

Stealing and using another person’s credit card details without their consent is illegal and punishable by the law.

Here are 10 tips to keep your credit card secure.

  1. Use secure and trusted sites. 

One way to secure your credit card detail is to use secure sites to transact your business. When making a purchase. Ensure that the site you want to use has a padlock icon on your web browser bar. This icon is the secure socket layer {SSL} encryption that protects your important details. Also, ensure that the URL has HTTPS INSTEAD OF HTTP. 

Make sure you read reviews about the websites you wish to visit and review the website’s security policies.

  1. Avoid using public or free Wi fi to shop or transact business 

People put themselves at risk when they use public Wi fi to conduct business with their credit cards because they don’t know who is monitoring their transactions to steal their credit card details. 

Use your credit card to avoid identity theft and online crimes when connected to a private network. An additional layer of security is to use a very strong VPN to create a secure connection if you don’t have access to a private network. VPN means virtual private network; this is a secure network created to surpass the public networks. It enables the user to share details, information, and data in a secure network.

  1. Avoid storing your credit card details online. 

When using your credit card to shop or pay for goods and services, it feels better and easier to save it online for future use to avoid the hassle of inputting your card detail each time you want to use the site. However, this is a serious security risk as anyone with access to their computer could make some fraudulent purchases. Learn or practice using a password-protected folder, document, or app to save all your card details.

You can also ask your credit card company if they offer virtual account number services. A virtual account creates a temporary card number for each purchase transaction. Your real card information isn’t exposed during the checkout process. Hence attackers cannot obtain your data.

Create a hard-to-guess PIN; AVOID USING YOUR BIRTHDAY OR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER. Avoid using your pet name or the names of people known to you. Always cover your hands when you want to input your card PIN in case of over-the-shoulder lookers.

  1. Ensure that your operating system is up to date.

When using your computer, download and install the latest updates to block any gaps or vulnerabilities in your computer operating system to avoid hackers or attackers exploiting them to steal valuable credit card details.

 Also, ensure that you use a chip-embedded card. Using a chip payment method instead of the traditional magnetic strip affords gives the card better security measures with the use of hard-to-guess Security codes that change with each purchase, making it impossible to counterfeit.

It is advisable to use the following ways to secure your System.

  • Use a very strong password.
  • Use a two-factor authentication process to verify your identity.
  • Never give access to your computer to people you don’t trust. Hence reduce the number of persons who can access your computer.
  • Never write down your password on paper.
  • Having a strong and paid antivirus helps to prevent identity and information theft.
  • Always review your credit card statements and account activities to ensure that there aren’t any irregularities.
  1. Watch out for scams.

When a deal sounds too good to be true, it is not. When you get a phone call from an unknown person claiming to be from your bank or you, get an email asking for you to verify your credit card details or bank information, or personal details like your security question and answer, ignore it because it is an attacker and it is a scam. When in Doubt, visit your bank for verification.

PLEASE be careful when using the ATM; this is because scammers usually attach devices called skimmers that can read your card every time you swipe your card. The same goes for strange POS machines.

  1. Don’t carry too many cards; limit it to one card.

You may have different cards for different reasons or Perks, that’s lovely, but you don’t need to carry all of them at once. Carry only the essential ones and if possible use the one with the least amount on it. The loss of multiple cards will be detrimental to the account owner.

Ensure that you use a little wallet and also designate Different credit cards for different purposes; the card you use for shopping should be different from the one you use for paying the bills and different from the one you use to withdraw money from your accounts.

  1. Keep your card safe always. 

There are things to do in this aspect that secure your card

• Always know where your card is 

• Don’t always keep your credit card in your wallet, as that is the first place thieves go.

• Don’t leave it carelessly around 

• Don’t write down your password or PIN.

• just in case of theft, report the loss of your credit card immediately to the police. for them to quickly track down the ones responsible 

  1. Be careful with your receipts.

Make sure that you draw a line across your receipt. No one can write in another number if there is extra space on it. It’s also a good idea to cross-check your receipts with your account to spot any fraudulent transactions fast. Finally, don’t just throw out any duplicates or old receipts. Shred the ones you don’t need or burn them completely and securely the rest.

You should shred everything that contains your details, like your full name, address, phone number, or any sensitive data. This will make it a lot more difficult for someone to find any information about you, and it will help protect you from being the next victim of a credit card breach.

  1. Use a well-known payment system to transfer funds from your account.

Sites like PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, Apple pay, Samsung pay, or android pay will keep your credit card number safe from the hands of potential hackers. This is possible because of the highly enhanced security network and encryption these sites use to secure their customers’ information.

  1. Set up an alert system

Most card issuers inform you through email or text alerts about unusual activity. Consider also signing up with a credit-monitoring service. Also, keeping your account private is key to securing your account. You need to review transactions on your bank statements when making purchases at different places. 

In some cases, you can be overcharged at some restaurants or stores, or you did not get a full refund on returning damaged merchandise. Therefore, you should always check your receipts against your statements every week.

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What happens when I lose my credit card information?

  • This leads to identity theft. A hacker can spend your money, pay for items, goods, and services and leave you to bear the burden of his actions.
  • Theft of savings, business money, allocated funds, etc.; when a theft like this occurs, it derails the real owner’s purpose for which the money was to be used.
  • The account owner Incurs bad debt. The account owner will have to pay for what they don’t know about or plan for. Such action could possibly bankrupt the account owner. 
  • The account owner is in trouble with the law if a crime has been committed.

How do criminals get access to your credit card information?

The following are the different ways criminals get your credit card information.

  • By keeping your card carelessly.
  • The owner gave information via a fake website.
  • Through theft of the credit card itself.
  • Through fake calls or emails asking for a credit card or bank account details.
  • Through using information obtained from public websites or porn sites.

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Who are the targets of online credit card theft? 

Certain people are usually the targets of any credit card theft syndicate. They are grouped as follows.

  • Individuals

This group has workers, students, pensioners, servants, rich people or poor people. These are your everyday people who work for a living and save their money for a reason or towards a certain goal.

In this group, making money for everyday living, some people have families, loved ones, and some form of dependence and bills to pay. Medicines to buy and such.

The theft of credit card details from this group could possibly cripple their everyday lives and disrupt and potentially destroy them. Due to credit card information theft. Some people have been known to have taken their lives because of loss of money or bad debt or loss of their homes or jobs.

  • Companies

Whether it be a large or small company, they are targets too. There have been daily stories about companies going under because of finance theft. So many people have lost their jobs, pensions, means of livelihood, medical cover, homes, etc.

Companies, both small and large, contribute to a nation’s economy and its well-being. So a loss of money and identity rob has a larger effect on the country as a whole because it increases the country’s poverty level and the country’s debt profile. Loss of identity and money will lead to rising in crime. And increase in suicide rates.

  • Governments.

On a global scale, certain syndicates of hackers target a country’s wealth. Theft of finance and identity leads to insecurity in a nation.

How to know you are a victim of credit card and identity theft

These are the ways you can know if your credit card details have been compromised 

  • Loss of money in your account 
  • Receiving bills for services you didn’t apply for.
  • Missing credit card and receiving debit alerts.
  • Debt collectors show up at your place of work or home asking for payment of a debt you don’t know about.
  • Receiving invoices for expensive items you didn’t purchase.
  • Bank card being declined at the place you want to make purchases.
  • Registration to sites you didn’t subscribe to, like gambling or porn sites.
  • Receiving calls from the police about payments supposedly made by you or on your behalf.

CONCLUSION

Keeping your credit card safe is an everyday job. It is the most important thing to do after making money. Following the tips listed above, you can prevent the theft of information.

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