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Credit card security: mitigation

Having your credit cards lost or stolen can be a stressful experience. Whether you are home or abroad, it's necessary to go through the correct procedures and processes when contacting your card provider.

Card theft

If they are lost or stolen, contact your card issuer immediately. If you are going abroad its worthwhile making a note of the card provider's phone number in case you need to contact them. Some card providers can get help, new cards or funds to you in an emergency while you are abroad.

You are usually protected from fraudulent use of your card provided you followed the card provider's tips and procedures. For example, avoid disclosing your PIN (Personal Identification Number) or by having an easy-to-guess PIN number e.g.1234 or 0000 etc.

All these scams have been successful because they appear to be from genuine agencies. You should never give out your financial details or personal information following unsolicited phone calls or emails.

Identity fraud

If you believe you are the victim of credit card fraud then contact your card issuer immediately. In most cases you will be able to reclaim any stolen funds.

Victims of identity fraud should also contact the three credit rating agencies Experian, Equifax and CallCredit. If someone has your credit card details they may be able to apply for credit in your name. Whilst it is possible to stop the fraud, removing damaging credit information from your report can take time.

If your card details have fraudulently been acquired online, you should also report it to the UK police force responsible for fraud - Action Fraud. The latest scams highlighted by Action Fraud include:

Targeting computer users

The users are directed to fake anti-virus sites where they are required to enter contact details. Fraudsters then typically follow up with phone calls or emails seeking payment.

Bank phishing

Fraudsters attempt to obtain sensitive information which will be of use to them. Real banks will never ask you to enter your personal information by visiting a website via a link in an email.

Amazon & PayPal phishing

Fraudsters are targeting users by sending fake emails and requests for personal information from established retailers. Key signs to look out for include:

  • Grammar errors
  • Incorrect return email address
  • Email text that explains a matter of urgency
  • Requests for Log in details

Fake emails from HM Revenue

Clicking on the attachment in the email causes software, to be downloaded which infects the computer, causing it to lock up until an online payment is made.

Other variations involve clicking on a link in the email which redirects the user to a fake page requesting personal details.

Parking Fine letters

Letters claiming to be from the police which demand payment of a fine online or penalty notices for vehicles hired with a stolen identity.

Cold Calling

Take a look at our range of credit cards and select the one that suits you best.

Fraudsters have now started playing music when they put you on hold as part of the effort to convince you that they are genuine.

We're here to help you. Find the answers and while you're at it, tell us how we could do better.