Do you always keep your debit and credit cards safe?

by Kristina on April 22, 2013 · 6 comments

Good morning Dinks.  Yesterday something happened to me and it was just so out of the ordinary that I have to share.  Yesterday I went out for lunch with one of my co-workers and when we were paying for our lunch she didn’t pull out her wallet she just pulled her debit card out of her pocket.  As a financial planner and former bank employee I felt the need to tell her the dangers of not keeping her debit card in a secure place.

There are so many dangers related to debit card and credit cards that I don’t even know where to begin: fraud, identity theft and lots and lots of false charges just to name a few.  Maybe it’s because I am a banker or maybe it’s because I am a control freak but I always keep my debit cards and credit cards safely tucked away in my wallet.

Do you keep your debit card and credit cards safely in your wallet or do you just keep it in your pocket and within reach for all pick-pocketers to take for themselves.

Here are some tips to keep your bank accounts, your credit cards and your money safe:

Use your cards at familiar places.  There is nothing worse than stopping for gas in an unfamiliar neighbourhood then getting home and finding out that you have been the victim of fraud.  This has happened to me and although my bank wouldn’t tell me where my debit card was cloned and used for fraud I knew that it was at the gas station.

I try to carry cash for all of my small purchases and only use my debit and credit cards at familiar big name stores. I also don’t let anyone swipe my card anywhere that I can’t see my card.  I actually don’t even like to give my card to any cashiers, I prefer to swipe or tap it myself and always keep my cards in my hand. If I know where my cards are at all times there is a lower chance that I will become a victim of fraud.

Be careful with your online banking.  Most financial institutions tell their customers that online banking is secure, but at the same time they warn clients about the dangers of online identity theft.  The truth is that there are so many other types of fraud that can happen if the wrong person gets a hold of your debit card, credit card or your PIN. Most people who commit fraud want to get the money and get out; they will use the debit card or credit card to get some quick cash and then move on to the next victim.  I am not saying that identity theft is a thing of the past; I am just saying that the business of fraud is all about the fast cash and quick turnaround.

Be care when you sign into your online banking. Do not have more than one browser window open when you are logged into your online banking. It is advised to stay off social media sites or any other type of information sharing site while you are logged into your online banking.  This helps prevent your personal information from being shared with the wrong people.

Have you ever been the victim of debit card or credit card fraud?

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Jake Erickson April 22, 2013 at 11:05 am

Fortunately, I’ve never been a victim of any sort of credit or debt card fraud. That being said, I know I can be more secure with my personal information. I absolutely love online banking because of the convenience factor, but I know that I should be a bit more secure when logging in (i.e. not having multiple tabs open). I know there are many things you can do to reduce the risk of fraud (like the few you mentioned above), but I think that staying on top of your cards’ balances and transactions is the best method. If you catch the fraud quickly you have a better shot of stopping it before it becomes a big deal. I log in to all of my accounts on a weekly basis just to make sure the transactions are all expected.

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