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5 ways to prevent credit card fraud this holiday season
‘Tis the season to be shopping…
With the holiday season already upon us, a lot of us are geared up for the annual sales online, end-of-year festivities and gift-giving. And while, it’s an exciting time to hit the stores (online, preferably), it’s also good to be wary of your credit card activity during this period.
Tips to prevent credit card fraud
While you shop for gifts for your loved ones this Christmas season (and yourself too, let’s be honest), you may want to keep these tips in mind to prevent your credit card from being susceptible to fraud attacks.
#1 Use unique passwords for your credit card accounts
Someone getting a hold of your passwords is especially dangerous if you share the same password on multiple accounts, like for example, your bank accounts and your e-mail.
This allows the cyber attacker to get a hold of your private information, and potentially change your passwords and log in to every account connected to that specific e-mail. Be sure to also use unique passwords on all your accounts to avoid this from happening.
While it may be a pain to change your passwords every few months, it’s an even bigger hassle to report any credit card fraud which may happen if someone steals your password!
It’s a really good idea to change your password every 3 months at least. If you have trouble remembering your passwords, there are some great apps to help you keep track of them or you can go old school and write them down in a notebook.
If you’re nervous about writing down all your passwords in one place where someone may find them, you could write down clues which help remind you of your passwords instead.
#2 Keep your credit cards safe and don’t save details on your computer
It’s tempting to save your credit card details on your computer or on vendor accounts. However, this puts you at risk should your device be stolen, hacked or if the vendor is hacked.
Just to be safe, always err on the side of caution and fill in your credit card details manually instead. It may seem like a bit of a hassle, but along with being the safer option, it might even put you off unnecessary spending!
#3 Set up alerts for new purchases
Be sure to set up alerts for any new purchases made on your credit card. You can do this by contacting your bank to get a text every time a purchase is made on the card. You can also ask that they call you t verify purchases of high amounts are made.
If you regularly shop on at certain online stores, be sure to register with your active e-mail so that you’ll be notified every time a purchase is made from that store on your credit card.
#4 Review your credit card statements every few days
During the Christmas season, it’s easy to get carried away with the spending and not really pay much attention to your credit card statements.
However, this period is especially important to be vigilant with your statements so that you catch any odd activity on your credit card – like a purchase you are certain you never made or a charge at a restaurant you never went to!
Unfortunately, many shoppers are likely to overlook their statements during the holidays as they spend more on their credit card at this time of the year. If the amount spent isn’t alarmingly large enough, the credit card fraud is easy to miss.
Hence, it’s really important to be aware of your credit card activity not just at this time of the year, but in general.
| See also: Best credit cards for Christmas shopping |
#5 Shred/tear all documents that contain your credit card information
If you have a habit of leaving your credit card statements lying around and forgetting where they’ve gone, or throwing them out in the trash without shredding them, you may be susceptible to having your credit card details swiped.
Before tossing out your statements, shredding the documents is a good precautionary step to take in warding off any credit card fraudsters.
With the end of the year approaching and most of us ready to say sayonara to 2020, we’re probably going to treat ourselves a little with some end-of-year retail therapy. Just be sure to stay safe online and off!
If you’re looking for the best credit card to take full advantage of all those end-of-year sales, Finder is here to help with our comparison tool to help you choose the right credit card.
Happy shopping and happy holidays!
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