Money Tips for College Students
With the advent of online commerce, credit and debit card fraud has exploded. In fact, according to data collected by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), there was 230,937 reports of credit card fraud filed in the first two quarters of 2022.
Unfortunately, credit card fraud can go unnoticed until it causes serious damage. Here, we’ve outlined what you need to know about credit and debit card fraud, how to protect yourself and what to do if you’re targeted.
What is credit card fraud?
Credit and debit card fraud occurs when a scammer gains access to a victim’s card information and goes on to empty their accounts, commit identity theft, and more.
Card fraud can be pulled off in several ways:
Fortunately, there are measures you can take to protect yourself from credit or debit card fraud. Follow these tips to stay safe:
If You’re Targeted
If you believe your credit or debit card is showing fraudulent activity, take immediate steps to mitigate the damage. First, let the credit card company know about the fraud. Similarly, if your debit card has been compromised, let Sooper Credit Union know as soon as possible. Your old card will be canceled and you’ll be issued a replacement card immediately. You may also want to consider placing a credit freeze on your accounts, as well, to prevent the scammer from taking out a loan or opening another account in your name.
Will I be liable for the fraud?
Taking immediate action upon the event of fraud is critical to your recovery. Under federal law, credit card holders are only liable for up to $50 in fraudulent charges. Debit card holders, on the other hand, only enjoy the same cap on their liability if they report the fraud within two days. Upon failure to do so, they may be held accountable for up to $500 if the fraud is reported within 60 days of occurrence. If they miss this deadline as well, they will be liable to cover the entire fraudulent charge to their account.
The good news is most credit and debit cards issued through major payment networks, like Visa and MasterCard, offer zero liability policies and other consumer protections. Read the fine print in your card agreement carefully to familiarize yourself with your responsibilities.
Credit and debit card fraud can devastate a victim’s financial health and leave them with huge bills to pay. Follow the tips outlined here to stay safe.
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