Credit cards and debit cards are a popular payment option for many Canadians. Be sure to take the appropriate steps to protect your cards – and your credit rating. The following strategies will help prevent your credit card or debit card from being misused.
Protect your Personal Identification Number (PIN)
Guard your cards
- Always know the location of your debit and credit cards. Keep them in a safe place and never leave your cards in the car or unattended at work.
- Don’t lend your cards to anyone.
- When making a purchase, keep your card in view at all times. Watch to make sure it is not “double swiped” if the merchant swipes your card for you.
- It sounds simple enough, but don’t forget to take your card after using it at an ATM or to pay for a purchase.
- Carry with you only the cards you need.
- Never provide your credit card number over the phone unless you are dealing with a reputable company or you initiated the call yourself.
- Conduct your ATM and debit transactions when and where you feel most secure. Watch for debit machines that don’t look authentic, plastic sleeves where you insert your card, or suspicious individuals nearby.
- If using drive-through ATMs, keep your doors locked and close your window as soon as possible.
Be conscious of anyone trying to distract you at an ATM
- Finish your transaction before talking to others.
Check your records, statements and activities
- Check your account statements as soon as they arrive and review your passbooks on a regular basis to ensure all transactions and charges are correct. Look for extra or missing transactions and report any discrepancies immediately.
- Review your daily withdrawal limits. If you do not need a high daily limit, reduce it. This will help to contain fraud by reducing the amount someone could access.
Report missing cards immediately.
- If your card is lost, stolen or is retained by an ATM, notify your financial institution immediately.
Numerous organizations are taking part in the war against fraud.