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Guard your credit card against frauds

Last updated on: June 16, 2010 14:59 IST

Guard your credit card against frauds

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Credit card information is privy and prone to theft.

Therefore it is your responsibility to keep it safe from miscreants who may illegally use it and make you pay the price for the same because after all, you are the owner of the card.

It is therefore important that precautions are taken so that you do not have to pay for the misdeeds of others.

Take note of the following:

Avoid giving out credit card information: Credit card thieves are known to pose as credit card issuers to trick you into giving your credit card number.

Therefore, give your credit card details only on the calls initiated by you to the customer service number. Also do not submit your credit card number through email.

As a general rule, most banks and credit card companies will never request your account numbers via e-mail.

No matter how official, credible an e-mail or website appears to be; if it is asking for sensitive information you can safely assume that it is not genuine.

In fact, most banks explicitly state that they will never approach you for such information through email.

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Guard your credit card against frauds

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Shred anything with your credit card number on it: In order to prevent anyone from getting their hands on your credit card number, make sure that all documents carrying your credit card number are destroyed.

Also, old credit cards which have expired should also be destroyed.

Report lost/stolen cards immediately: The sooner you report a missing credit card the less likely it is that you'll have to pay for any fraudulent charges made on your credit card.

Make sure you always keep your credit card number handy and also the customer services number of the company so that you can immediately inform them of a missing card.

Review your bills on a monthly basis: The easiest way of determining any credit card fraud on your card is by spotting any unauthorized transaction.

If you notice a charge that does not belong to you, no matter how small the amount, report it to the credit card issuer on an immediate basis.

Your credit card issuer will then guide you on what the future course of action should be.

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Guard your credit card against frauds

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Sign on the card- The moment you receive your card, make sure you put your signature on it.

Although, it is mandatory to do so, some of us tend to ignore it, and it then can be easily misused if it falls into the hands of some miscreants.

That's because the person can put his own signature on the card and start using it without creating any suspicion while transacting with various merchants.

Keep your PIN secure: Make sure you do not write the PIN on your card or you do not keep it accessible anywhere in your wallet.

In a scenario your wallet being pick pocketed, both your card number and pin number will be available and cash can easily be withdrawn on the credit card.

Be careful of your CVV number: The CVV number can be used for online transactions. So anybody knowing your card number and your CVV number, can do online transactions (purchase of air tickets, equipments etc).

Therefore, do not give a photocopy of both sides of your credit card to anyone. Also make sure that the websites on which your transacting online is safe and secure. For that, look for the lock on the bottom right corner of the screen.

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Guard your credit card against frauds

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Opt for a card protection plan: In case you have lost or have been robbed off your card, you're in double trouble - your card could be used for a fraudulent purchase and you lose the convenience to pay though the card.

Besides, you may have lost all your other important documents such as pan card, driving license etc. which may have been in your wallet that has now been stolen.

Look for a 'Card protection plan' to help you with such dilemmas.

What is a Card Protection Plan?

It is card protection service that can be used anywhere in the world when your card has been lost or stolen.

All you need to do is call the CPP toll free domestic/international number as the case may be, which is a 24 hour service and inform them of the loss or theft.

CPP in turn will inform all the issuers and get the cards canceled.

In addition, CPP will also help you in your travel, hotel bill payments to the extent of the coverage of the product you have chosen. Also you will get help on getting your documents done such as passport, driving license and new cards among other things.

You need to buy this product for which annual charges need to be paid. Then you need to register all your cards and all the documents you deem necessary.

Two types of products are available- Classic and Premium. The yearly charges are 

  • Classic- Single user- Rs. 995; Joint Card user: Rs. 1495
  • Premium- Single user: Rs. 1295; Joint Card user: Rs. 1945

Cardholders can choose any of the above plans depending on their needs.

Customers can be covered for fraud loss on their cards for an amount up to Rs 1,00,000 prior notification and Rs 20 lakh (Rs 2 million) post notification; overseas emergency assistance for payment of hotel expenses of up to Rs 1,20,000 and Rs. 60,000 in India; and replacement travel ticket advance of Rs 1,20,000 while overseas and Rs 60,000 whilst in India.

This plan doesn't cover online frauds. So if your card is misused for online transactions by a third party, CPP does not protect you.

There is no cap on the number of cards that you can register for protection under one registration/membership.

You can choose to register all your financial and non-financial cards such as membership/loyalty cards as well as other valuable documents such as driving license, passport, PAN card and any financial certificates.

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Why should you opt for a CPP?

One phone call to block all the cards: In this plastic world, having an average of 2-3 cards is not uncommon at all. In case of a loss, the CPP requires you to dial only one toll free number which is available 24 hours.

CPP will undertake the task of canceling all your cards. The card holder is thus saved from the trouble of calling all the credit card issuers separately.

Fraud protection: You get worldwide protection against fraudulent use of lost or stolen card.

Fraudulent protection is available pre-notification i.e. 7 days prior to reporting your card loss or theft and post notification.

Emergency travel, hotel assistance and document registration:  If you're stuck anywhere in India or abroad because you have lost all your cards, under CPP the worldwide emergency assistance will facilitate your tickets and hotel payments if your card is lost or stolen.

You will also be able to opt for their help in getting your documents such as your passport or new cards in order by providing the necessary notifications and contact numbers.

Plastic money has gained prominence in the last few years because the modern day Indian consumer has taken a liking to cashless travel.

The convenience offered by credit cards to pay off bills, movie tickets, and other related transactions has resulted in an increase in its usage manifold. But there are also associated risks which you need to be aware of.

Use it to serve your need but at the same time take all the care to avoid finding yourself in a spot of bother.



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