Find Top Credit Cards  Add To Favorites  Bookmark and Share    Login / Register
Credit Cards Credit Reports Credit Library Forum
Credit Card Security   Credit Library   E-mail This   Print
Credit Card Lost or Stolen?
Credit Card Security Standards
Credit Card Scams
Signing Your Credit Card
Credit Card Loss Protection Offers
Credit Card Lost or Stolen?

a. Protect Yourself From The Pirates Of The Credit Cards:

  • Preserve your Sanity: Lost your credit card? Is the empty wallet staring in your face? Don’t be alarmed. At times, we tend to lose credit cards due to our negligence or due to the deft- handedness of a pickpocket fellow. Whatever the reason might be, it is you who should bear the brunt. The nightmarish experience of losing a credit card can be quite disheartening and panicky for the loser. No need to panic! You can handle this.
    Remember no amount of cursing or lamenting is going to get your credit card back. Get a hold on your emotions and try to see how you can fix it.
  • Take Reins: Now, stop being lazy! You cannot afford to be reckless or dumb about your financial statements any more. You’ve got to brace yourself and sort out the mess you are into. Don’t sit there counting minutes, scratching your head and pitying yourself. Every minute you lose, you are getting yourself into a deeper trouble. A lost credit card can create havoc in your life; dwindle your finances, affect your credit score and might even land you into a morass of debts from which there’s no way out.
  • Report: First, call the credit company immediately and intimate them about your loss. In case, you don’t have the helpline number of the credit card company look it up in their website. While filing the complaint you would be required to tell your account number; so, better recollect it or dig it out from your previous credit card statements. The sooner you report the better it would be. As per the federal law, for the unauthorized use of your credit card you will be held responsible for a maximum liability of $ 50.
  • Write: A phone call can never take the place of a written letter; especially, in a formal setting. What if the customer care executive didn’t execute your complaint? Also, find out the name of the customer care executive you have dealt with and write down that person’s name for future reference. You would better give a written complaint to the credit card issuer so that you can use it as a proof in the later stages. Make sure that the complaint contains all the necessary details like your account number, date on which the credit card was lost etc.
  • Observe: Now, keep your eyes open and study each and every line of your monthly credit card statements. If you find any suspicious purchases or if you have been billed for something that you haven’t purchased; report it immediately to the card issuer. Keep a copy of the complaint with you.

b. Steps To Take:

  • Always check your wallet if all the credit/debit cards are in place or not.
  • Just because you own a credit card, you need not carry it to every God forbidden place you go. Keep the credit card at a safe place and use it only when required.
  • Don’t advertise your PIN numbers at the back of your credit card, your phone books etc. Write it down in some safe place, hidden away from the human eye.
  • Don’t go whispering your bank passwords and PIN numbers over the phone or scrapping it on online messengers. You never know who else has access to such information. Be discreet while revealing your financial details to any body.
  • Start filing away all your monthly statements after rigorous scrutiny. Write down all the important information like credit card numbers, passwords and such other confidential details in a separate book and keep it safe. Now, heave a sigh of relief and grab your new credit card. Happy Swiping!

Credit Card Security Standards

It’s time for introspection. How much do we know about the security standards and technologies of the credit cards that we flaunt around? You are clueless, right! We cannot imagine living a single day with out our dearest credit cards & laptops etc. But, how far are we knowledgeable and equipped to deal with their safety mishaps! This is a question which every one of us should attempt to answer and see where exactly we stand in this regard.

The first and foremost thing that should come to our mind when we think of credit card security standards is PCI DSS. The letters doesn’t ring the bell right! It isn’t your fault, not many companies or issuers have ever highlighted this security issue. Let’s dig deep into this, to know what exactly it means:


PCI DSS refers to Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard are a set of security standard protocols which all the credit card providers in the world are expected to follow. These are the definitive guidelines that will assure the security of the customer’s credit card from hacking, misuse and other fraudulent invasions of the personal identity. Any company that is dealing with any kind of credit card and is responsible for storing, dispensation and transfer of customer data should be fully compliant of these security standards to carry on their business. They should make sure that the customer data that is with their company should not fall into the wrong hands and to make this possible they should build a secured network for gathering and meting out this confidential data in the technical confines of their organization. Even those organizations that do not deal directly with the credit cards but are closely working with the companies that deal with this data are also required to prove their conformity.

All these so-called compliant companies should undergo a validation check every year in order to ensure that the security standards are up-to-date. For major companies, this validation is a three-step certification ordeal that they should overcome diligently; whereas the path for the small companies is less thorny. They can do their self assessment by using a Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ). Now you know where everything goes wrong. Imagine what would happen, if you were asked to correct your answer paper on your own. You’ve got it Right; the same thing is happening with the self-assessment of these companies as well. Merchants are maneuvering their technical networks in such a way that they appear to be in compliance with the set standards even when they are not. If the merchant fails to exhibit this compliance his credit card processing rights will be taken away and he will no longer be able to run a business.

2. PSI Security Guidelines:

Some of the important guidelines that can help the organizations protect the consumer’s credit card data are as follows:

  • Create a secure network for storing and transmission of the customer’s credit card data. Make sure that the firewall & anti-virus are installed and functioning properly.
  • To maintain the confidentiality of the customer’s credit card data while transmitting it to the other networks, use encryption technology to camouflage it.
  • Constantly check for the vulnerabilities of the computer systems and remove them by using up-to-date security software. Monitor all the systems and transmission paths regularly to identify any suspicious activity.
  • Keep the customer’s credit card data out of reach from the ordinary people. Give access only to the specific personnel and make sure that everybody has a separate identity. This will minimize the risk of compromising the data’s security.
  • Clamp down on the internet security and the protection of the customer’s data with a heavy hand.

Whenever there is a revision of these security guidelines, the companies also should update their security technologies and measures. The next time you want to apply for a credit card or make some major transaction with a company, find out whether that particular company is PSI compliant or not.

Credit Card Scams

a. Beware of Credit Card Scams:

Thanks to the avarice and eccentricities of our hackers; our identities are getting blurred, our credit cards are being stolen and our computers are anything but safe! In such a bleak condition, it shouldn’t be of any surprise to you that thousands of credit card scams are taking place throughout the US every year.

Picture this scenario, you’ve taken your family to a movie and used credit card to buy your tickets, popcorn etc. And, when you got your next credit card statement you are in for a shock. You’ve been charged for buying a laptop, an LCD TV and a whole lot of such other stuff which you don’t own at all. You’ve started breaking your head, trying to figure out why on earth you were charged for a laptop when all that you have bought is simple popcorn! This is the typical example of a credit card fraud most of us end up with, after a serious identity theft.

Have you ever wondered why is it that there so many credit card frauds happening in the country? It’s not just our ignorance or irresponsibility that is leading to these frauds. There are several other factors that have been contributing to these frauds like over-smartness of the hackers, misuse of technology, proliferation of fraudsters etc. Whatever the reason is, it is you who should bear the loss. We wish, if only you could pass the buck!

b. Types of Credit Card Scams:

Let’s take a look at some of the popular credit card fraud scams that have been troubling the nation.
A wide range of credit card scams are targeting the people, stealing their money, identity and peace of mind. Some of the notable credit card scams are as follows:

  • Pre –approval Offers: In this scam, fraudsters will deceive you with pre-approval credit card offers saying that you have been approved for a large sum of credit and will ask you to call a certain number. And when you call this number you will be asked to pay a certain fee to be able to initiate the card. In most cases, you wouldn’t receive a card even after making a slew of calls and when you receive, it might not be of any use to you.
  • Stolen Cards: Impostors use stolen credit cards to make purchases or to take out huge amount of loans and they will use up all the funds related to it. If you fail to report the loss of your card to the credit card company, then, you will be liable to pay all the expenses that have been incurred on your lost credit card.
  • Skimming: In this fraud, your credit card will be swiped an extra time (without your knowledge) when you are making some payment using a magnetic strip reader. The magnetic strip reader stores your credit card number which will then be used for fraudulent purposes.
  • Identity Theft: This is the most prevalent credit card fraud in US. Hackers compromise the security of your computer by breaking in and steal the confidential information like your credit card PIN number, Social Security Number etc which will then be used for siphoning up your funds.
  • Nigerian Scams: In one of these scams, the trickster will place an order for a large quantity of goods which will be delivered promptly but the merchant never gets paid. And there is no way in which you can track these tricksters.

c. Act Immediately:

Whenever you suspect that you have become a victim of identity theft or that you have lost your credit card, report it immediately to the concerned credit card issuer. The sooner you complain, the better it would be for you. According to federal law, your liability for the unauthorized use of your credit card is $50. Indeed, this law is a life-saver when you have lost your card but what about the time and energy you have to spend in reporting the loss, following it up, repairing your robbed credit etc. All this mess will surely make you lose your sleep and will also make you feel that the world is not a safe place to live any more.

Signing Your Credit Card

Myths About Signing Your Credit Card:

  • Seal the card with a Sign: We love signing the autographs, mails, greeting cards and letters; but not the poor credit cards that wait for our single signature indefinitely!
    Any merchant can deny your payment, if your credit card is not signed and you cannot force him to do otherwise. That is why, credit card issuers insist that the customers should sign their credit cards as soon as they receive them. Don’t waste your time thinking whether or not to sign your credit card. For, it hardly takes a minute to sign and you are not going to lose anything by doing it. Then, why not do it once the credit card is issued to you.
  • Significance of your Signature: You credit card should carry your signature in order to be legally valid. Not that the credit company is dying for your autograph; but, it’s a precautionary measure taken to save your credit card from being misused by somebody else. In fact, the sales people, merchants etc who ever is accepting payment from you are supposed to check your signature before swiping in your credit card. Easier said than done, rarely any merchant remembers to do this and thus many a fraudulent transactions go undetected. Who are to be blamed? The only situation wherein a fraudster might be corned is, when the merchant asks for some other identity proof like driver’s license etc. Don’t you think that it’s too far-fetched a notion to assume that the merchant who hasn’t bothered to check the signature will have the hunch to ask for an identity proof!

Some people prefer to write Check I.D. or See I.D. on the back of their credit card hoping that this will create problems for the fraudster. They believe that if they sign the credit card then, the fraudster might forge their sign and misuse it for other purpose. Wake up! Do you really think that the fraudster will wait for the sales man to check his identity and catch him? He will simply escape saying that he is not carrying the identity proof or some such other excuse. And the merchant is not entitled to catch him just for not carrying the identity proof. It doesn’t make sense right!

The best thing to do would be to write ‘Ask for photo ID’ and this trick will only work when the clerk has bothered to read it on credit card alone. You can also try using a complicated signature so that the thief might not be able to forge it (Fraudsters are supposed to be skilful; so it would be a miracle if he really is unable to replicate your signature).Chances are that the security of your credit card can be compromised whether you sign it or not. So, you decide which options suits you better.

Credit Card Loss Protection Offers

However much we might enjoy using our credit cards, we all are worried about its security at the back of our minds. At times, this fear makes us restless and even gives us sleepless nights whenever we hear about a credit card fraud. And it is this fear that makes us vulnerable to the frauds of credit card protection offers.

Let’s find out what these credit card protection offers are about.

a. Credit Card Protection Scams:

Whenever we get a spam mail offering credit card protection, we are tempted to sign-up for that offer. It takes us a great deal of effort to stay away from such offers. These offers don’t end with mails alone. People often get calls from strangers offering credit card protection offers and they even insist that if you haven’t protected your credit card the hell is going to break loose. Other kinds of scams include, people call you up claiming that they are calling from your issuer’s office and will ask for your credit card information so that they can update the protection for your card. This is the most ridiculous scam you can ever come across, as no credit card company will ask for such confidential information over the phone. Don’t buy such crap!

b. Words of Law:

The adage “Knowledge is power” holds good to the issue of credit cards. The more knowledgeable you are, the less gullible you will be to credit card frauds. Hearken to the law before you listen to anybody else. According to law, the liability of a card holder for unauthorized charges is limited to $50. In case, you have lost your credit card report it immediately to your credit card issuer so that you will not be liable for any unauthorized purchases that were made using your card. One more thing, if somebody says that there is a change in the law, don’t believe him. Law doesn’t change overnight and even if it does, you can always verify the truth before proceeding further.

c. Ring In The Real:

Ask your credit card company if there are any protection offers that come with the card. If there aren’t any you better change your credit card company or look for an external company that is ready to offer authentic protection offers for you. There are some credit companies that offer genuine credit card protection offers to its customers; but unfortunately, the market is flooded with impostors more than the real ones. You need to separate the wheat from the chaff to know which one is real.

d. Protect Your Information:

Never ever reveal the details of your credit card like account number, PIN etc to anybody over the phone, mail or blogs. Even if somebody claims to be from the issuer, verify the identity of the caller before revealing any confidential information. Keep your credit card safe at all times and report immediately if it goes missing.

© 2009 All Rights Reserved About Us | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Site Map
Disclaimer: has taken minute care to furnish all the information as accurately regarding Credit/Debit Cards and other services, as possible. We will not be held responsible for any inaccurate information and hence we would like to request you to verify the Rates, Terms & Conditions of the Credit/Debit Cards, and other Credit Program Services as they are tentative and can change without prior intimation.