Stop the scam! 6 ways to keep your credit card data safe

April 05, 2019 3 min read

Stop the scam! 6 ways to
keep your credit card data safe

As the majority of today’s transactions are digital, the potential for theft of your credit card data increases; criminals are raising the stakes as quickly as your banks can come up with ways to thwart them.

 

In 2018, Australians fell victim to nearly half a billion dollars of credit card fraud - a mind-blowing 76 percent increase from the previous year.

 

By staying alert and using a little common sense, you can minimise your chances of suffering the same fate. Whether you’re at home or overseas, follow our 6 tips to keep your credit card data safe.

 

1) Cover the PIN pad at ATMs

 

Although it may seem obvious, this is a simple thing many people forget to do when they’re in a hurry. This is particularly important when travelling, as people become easy prey for card skimmers and cameras installed inside ATMs. Try choosing an ATM attached to a bank or reputable store rather than a freestanding one, and always use your hand to cover your PIN when you enter it.

2) Be online security savvy

Online hacking is now the biggest form of credit card fraud. Online shopping is so common now that many of us enter our credit card details without giving it a second thought. Take a moment to examine any website before you enter personal information; if it looks dodgy, give it a miss. Check the security of a site by looking for the little padlock icon in the address bar, which should be in the “locked” position. If there is no secure payment option like PayPal, and no apparent security, don't take the risk.

3) Beware of free wifi!

Free wifi is like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, particularly when you are travelling. But bear in mind that many public wifi systems are not secure; hackers can easily access your data when you use them. If you're checking your bank account or obtaining other personal information, make sure you use a secure network. If in doubt, try using your mobile phone data as a hot spot for your laptop; the 4G networks from most providers are secure.

 

4) Keep your card close

Image: Shopify

When travelling, take two cards maximum, and stash them in separate places so you always have a backup if one goes walkabout. For extra security, opt for a stylish handbag that has pickpocket proof lockable compartments and RFID protection, or a slashproof anti theft travel bag.

 

It only takes seconds for professional skimmers to scan your card and steal your data. The technology for doing so is scarily efficient and advancing rapidly. If someone takes your card away from you to make a payment (for example, at a restaurant), watch where they go. If in doubt, check your account ASAP after you leave.

5) Manage your private information

Take notice of where your personal details are recorded, and make sure nobody else can access them. If you’re throwing out bank statements or receipts that may have sensitive data, destroy them properly by shredding or burning them.

6) Use RFID blocking accessories

With some credit cards, thieves can use radio frequency identification (RFID) to steal your data, even when it’s still in your bag!

Invest in an RFID blocking card sleeve or wallet to avoid falling victim to this invisible threat.

 

While your credit card data can be stolen both at home and when travelling, when it happens on the road, there’s the added inconvenience of spending precious holiday time on the phone to your bank, and potentially being stuck without money. A bit of knowledge and awareness can help keep your hard-earned money safe!

 


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Zoomlite Australia - Blog

5 Bags Every Man Should Have
5 Bags Every Man Should Have

September 15, 2020 5 min read

The sight of a man with a bag other than a briefcase was once a rarity, but attitudes towards men’s accessories have changed. What was once a nearly taboo trend – man bags – has turned into one of the most popular
Read More
What is Ultraviolet Light and How Does it Work as a Disinfectant?
What is Ultraviolet Light and How Does it Work as a Disinfectant?

September 01, 2020 8 min read

It’s normal to be more concerned about sanitation and disinfecting during a pandemic. But not all methods are created equal. Learn all you need to know about ultraviolet disinfection, how it works and how to use it correctly below
Read More
What the New Normal of Travel Could Look Like
What the New Normal of Travel Could Look Like

August 10, 2020 6 min read

We’re living in times where the ‘new normal’ for life is being redefined daily. COVID-19 has upended what was once the norm and has forced us to live within new boundaries. Many believe that travel will not be spared. Before we can daydream about travelling again, we should first consider what the ‘new normal’ for travel could look like.
Read More