Credit Card Fraud: Avoiding the Unavoidable

by : Devin Gilliland

Credit card fraud is on the rise, with certain sources claiming that the internet has been the breading ground of this illegal industry. With reports suggesting that around 1 in 40 transactions are fraudulent, how can we as consumers avoid facing the brunt of credit card fraud? can be as hard to trace, as it is easy to commit. That is why we can never be certain where our details were taken, and what methodology was used. From online shopping, to your local cafe, anyone could have taken your details, whilst it may not be them that use your details directly.

It is reported that wholesale credit card details are worth around $8 each. This is an indication of several factors, firstly the routine processes of fraud that is in place, and secondly the sheer scale of the operation. Did you know that Nigeria sees credit card fraud as its 3rd biggest Industry? A complete resolution to credit card fraud would see the Nigerian economy plummet into deep recession that would inevitably be aided, in some way, by western organisations and governments. A popular Nigerian music act recently published a song, with lyrics that mimic and ridicule the less than savvy consumers that suffers as a result of their crime. But how can we put a stop to this, or at least avoid it as much as possible?

> Never provide credit card details or bank information via email.

> Should you complete an online purchase then ensure that the address bar reads rather than This means your data was encrypted and will get into the hands that you intended it to.

> Do not purchase from a company online, should you have any doubts whatsoever. Should the company fail to provide a legitimate address and phone number, do not contract with them. Dealing with an incorporated or limited company is generally safer.

> Should you lose your purse or wallet then contact your credit card provider immediately.

> Do not give away your credit card details on incoming telephone phone calls or emails.

> Ensure that you keep your credit card in a physically safe place. Never let your bag out of your sight when you are away from home.

> Many restaurants and clubs for example will embark in the process of the waiter or waitress taking your credit card away to input your details into the machine. This is an example of giving an opportunity to someone where by they can note your details. However, you also provide the same opportunities during telephone transactions and certain internet transactions.

> Should you be purchasing over the internet, one of the safest ways to pay is through using a third-party merchant service such as Pay Pal or World Pay.

> Should you be a victim of fraud ensure that you report this immediately, also remembering to contact the company that was affected. This will radically decrease the chances of the goods being delivered to the customer, and you having to pay any fine to your credit card company.