Debit cards are safer than credit cards. It’s a well known fact. But this doesn’t mean that debit card fraud can’t occur. Unfortunately, it does. There are actually many different methods through which bad guys can steal your information and use it to empty your bank account.
When debit card fraud occurs, your money usually disappears from your account instantly. Even if you catch the thief, it can take some time before you get your money back. That’s if you ever get it back.
The best way to protect yourself from debit card fraud is to make sure that it doesn’t happen to you. This article will show you just how to do it.
Spotting debit card fraud
The best way to detect debit card fraud is to check your accounts daily. If you have online banking, there’s nothing easier. Speed is important when dealing with debit card fraud. The sooner you detect it, the faster you can limit its impact.
Once you notice an unfamiliar transaction, call your bank right away. And if you have problems remembering what you bought, then hang on to receipts. Remember, if a person knows your PIN, then that person has access to your entire account.
How to protect yourself against debit card fraud
It’s important to understand that you are not helpless in the fight against hackers or other thieves. There are actually many things that can help you to avoid becoming a victim. Here are some of them:
1. Banking alerts
If you don’t want to check your account on a daily basis, get banking alerts. Your bank will contact you either by email or text messages, if it sees any strange activities occurring on your account.
2. Use a credit card
It might be easier for someone to steal your credit card and use it, but that damage is limited. Once you report that the card was stolen, the credit card company takes care of the rest. The only thing you need to do is get another credit card. This will probably cost you less than $50, which is a lot less than losing everything you have in your account.
3. Use only bank ATMs
These ATMs come with video cameras and are much more secure than the ones at convenience stores or other places.
4. Sign up for paperless bank statements
Not only will you help save the environment, but you’ll also make sure that your account information can’t be stolen from your mailbox. And if you have any existing bank statements lying around, you might want to shred them, especially if you don’t need them anymore.
5. Destroy old debit cards
A shredder can come in handy in this situation as well.
6. Use multiple accounts
Keeping all your money in one place is not a really good idea.
7. Make sure your computer is protected
Use a firewall and always keep your antivirus and antispyware software up to date.
8. Use a secured network
Try to avoid doing financial transactions on your computer while you’re in a public place or on an unsecured network.
9. Beware of phishing scams
We each get hundreds, maybe thousands of unwanted emails each month. Stay away from them, especially the shady-looking ones. Don’t click on them and don’t open them.
Don’t make it easier for the bad guys to steal your money. Be careful, follow the advice above and you and your accounts will be save.