Stop Credit Card Fraud Before It Starts

Credit card fraud, especially on the internet, is wide spread.  Here are some things you can do to stop credit card fraud before it’s too late.

For Online:

* Do not purchase anything online unless you certainly know that the company is legitimate.  Call  them first to learn their legitimacy.

* Never give out your personal information online.

* Check your credit report annually.

* Delete emails that ask you to verify your account or state that your account has been suspended.  Instead call the company to verify.

* If you pay accounts online, never use the link provided in the email.  Bookmark the site from the beginning and go to the site using the bookmark.

* If you have an account with eBay or PayPal, order their identity protection key.  It’s only $5.00 but worth every penny.

* When purchasing anything online, make sure there is the security key in the lower right hand corner of the site.

For Offline:

* Never give out any personal information or credit card numbers over the phone.

* When you apply for a credit card, be sure to sign the back of the card as soon as it is received.

* Rip up or shred all credit card applications you receive in the mail.

* Take off the name and address label from any magazines or other material you receive in the mail.

* Keep your credit cards in a safe place in your home.  Only carry one with you.

* Never keep your PIN number in your purse.  Just memorize it.

* When using the ATM machine, cup your hand over the numbers so that anyone behind you cannot see what numbers you are utilizing.  This is absolutely true if they have a camera cell phone.

* Check every credit card bill to make sure no one has used your account.

* If you shop at a store that still uses carbon paper for credit card transactions – ask for it, take it home and rip it into shreds.

* Prepare your banking slips before you proceed to the bank.  Never fill out a deposit or withdrawal slip on a line at the bank.

* When visiting a doctor’s office for the first time, you are required to fill out a form.  Do not write in your social security number (it’s optional).  This number will be generated when the information is put into the computer.

Credit card fraud has become a epidemic in our society, especially among users of the internet.  Guard your personal information any way you can, even if it means investing in the best anti-virus, anti-spam software.  If you use a cable modem, unplug the PC cable from the modem after you’ve shut down the computer.

Lastly, always be aware of the people around you when you shop or bank.  Keep your credit card separate from your purse, and always keep your purse zipped, locked, or otherwise closed when you shop.

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