moneyhound

moneyhound

Credit Card Fraud, Scams and Tricks

By Lauren Leisk, Yahoo!7 Moneyhound Updated June 15, 2013, 9:00 am

What to do if you think you've been a victim of credit card fraud, and how to become more aware of credit card scams.


Australians lost $1.4 billion due to personal fraud in 2010-2011, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, and that number has no doubt risen in more recent years.


Consumers are using their credit cards more often to purchase everyday goods and services. While shoppers benefit from this convenience, scammers are taking advantage of technology to trick unsuspecting Australians.


The recent statistics show about 1.2 million people were victims of at least one incident of personal fraud in the 12 months prior to being surveyed.


The best way to protect yourself from scams is by understanding how they work and how to avoid them.


What is credit card fraud?


Credit card fraud involves the use of card details to make unauthorised purchases and/or withdrawing cash without the cardholder's consent. While it mostly refers to credit cards, it also extends to debit cards and pre-purchased store gift cards.


The most common types of fraud are when the card is not present (a transaction is completed quoting the card number over the phone, internet, via post or fax without the card being physically present), counterfeit cards, the card was not received (stolen from a mailbox) or application fraud.


More calculated methods are being utilised by thieves to take advantage of consumers. These include hacking into databases that hold customer information, sending phishing emails asking users to disclose credit card information, sending text messages offering prizes in return for personal details and more.


Related: The dangers of holidaying on credit


Warning signs


SCAMwatch from the ACCC advises Australians to be aware of warning signs that your credit card may have been scammed.


Unrecognisable transactions on your credit card statement or a lost credit card could be an indication of credit card fraud. If you have written your PIN on a slip of paper and this is now missing, this could also be a sign you have been scammed.


What to do if you think you've fallen victim to credit card fraud


Immediately inform your financial institution that you believe your card or PIN has been lost, stolen or compromised. This is extremely important because if you unreasonably delay reporting, you may not get your money back.


You can also report fraud and scams to a number of authorities to help prevent crime occurring in Australia. Contact the ACCC for interstate/overseas scams or if your bank or credit card account is targeted. The ATO handles scammers targeting your tax payments or details. For financial and investment scams, contact ASIC.


Related: 10 ways to save $1,000's in just one year


How to avoid credit card fraud and scams:


1. Don’t trust a person, business or organisation that requests for you to provide them with your credit card details over the phone, in a text message or via email or postal service.


2. Avoid using your card at risky places such as unsecure online stores (sites without a padlock icon in the URL box), markets and non-bank ATMs.


3. Never let your card leave your sight if you're paying in person. You don’t know whether the person will copy the magnetic strip or write down your card details, so self-defence and prevention is always your best protection.


4. Government website MoneySmart advises Australians to choose a PIN number that would be difficult for others to figure out.


Personally, I have SMS alerts set up so that if a transaction is higher than $1,000 my phone beeps to tell me!


Start your search for a secure credit card at Moneyhound now.


What's your best fraud avoiding tip? Comment and share your thoughts on our facebook page.


Great reads:
Debt Consolidation: How to be debt free, faster.
Why savers are losers
20 Tax deductions you can make today
10 Ways to lower your rent
Best smartphone deals you'll find online


Moneyhound Product Picks this Month:


Products mentioned on this page might yield referral payments to Moneyhound. For more information see how we get paid.
COMPARE & SAVE

Newsletter

Get the latest deals that could save you money on your monthly bills

Other Great Reads

Help me find a savings account

  • Account type

  • State/Territory

  • Anytime access accounts

  • Fixed-term deposit accounts

Help me Save

Use our savings account interest calculator

      • Interest rate (APR*) used : 5.2%

      *APR and APR term suggestions are based on market competitive products listed on this page. Fees and charges are payable. Read the disclaimer

      Moneyhound helps you compare 477 saving accounts from 86 trusted issuers

      Saving Accounts Latest News

      Compare more products and services

      Disclaimer: Yahoo!7 has partnered with RateCity, WhistleOut and SwitchWise for the provision of pricing information for financial, telecoms and energy products. Yahoo!7 has partnered with Lifebroker to provide information regarding life risk products and with RateCity to provide information on general insurance products. Yahoo!7 has no direct affiliation with any finance, telecom or energy institutions listed here to promote this content. The content of this website has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Because of this, you should not acquire any financial products before taking into account whether your selected products are appropriate to your personal circumstances, having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs. Whilst reasonable efforts are maintained to provide accurate, true and correct information, it is advised that you confirm the terms of any product or contract and consult the product disclosure statement before making a decision to apply to any product issuer.

      Whilst Yahoo!7 Moneyhound attempts to provide information regarding as many products in the market as is possible, not all available products are compared on this site.The comparison rates for home loans are based on secured credit of $150,000 and a term of 25 years. The comparison rates for car and personal loans are based on credit of $10,000 and a term of 3 years. WARNING: The comparison rate applies only to the example given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees and cost savings such as fee waivers are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. Read more on our disclaimers here.

      Yahoo!7 Money Hound Pty Ltd | ACN: 151 232 450 | ABN: 20 151 232 450
      Australian Financial Services Licence: 407341 | Australian Credit Licence: 407723 | Credit Ombudsman Service: member M0011954
      Financial Services Guide | Privacy | Terms