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Monday, May 14, 2007

Your Credit Card Safety

Welcome!
When I received this information about new credit card and cell phone fraud today, I thought it worthy enough to share with you, hoping to raise awareness in a big way... have a read.

SCENE #1...
This is a new one.

A friend went to the local gym and placed his belongings in the locker. After the workout and a shower, he came out, saw the locker open and thought to himself, "Funny, I thought I locked the locker.

He dressed and just flipped the wallet to make sure all was in order. Everything looked okay, all of his cards were in their proper place. A few weeks later his credit card bill came... with a whopping balance of $14,000!

He called the credit card company and started yelling at them, saying that he did not make the transactions. Customer care personnel verified that there was no mistake in the system and asked if his card had been stolen.

"No," he said, but when he took out his wallet and pulled out the credit card - you guessed it - a switch had been made. An expired similar credit card from the same bank was in the wallet. The thief had broken into his locker at the gym and switched cards.

Verdict:

The credit card issuer said since he did not report the card missing earlier, he would have to pay the amount owed to them. How much did he have to pay for items he did not buy? $9,000! Why were there no calls made to verify the amount swiped?

Small a mounts rarely trigger a "warning bell" with some credit card companies. It just so happens that all the small amounts added up to big one!

SCENE #2...
A man paid for his meal with his credit card at a local restaurant. The bill for the meal came, he signed it and the waitress folded the receipt and passed the credit card along. Usually, he would just take it and place it in his wallet or pocket. Funny enough, though, he actually took a look at the card and, lo and behold, it was the expired card of another person. He called the waitress and she looked perplexed.

She took it back, apologized and hurried back to the counter under the watchful eye of the man. All the waitress did while walking to the counter was wave the wrong expired card to the counter cashier, and the counter cashier immediately looked down and took out the real card. No exchange of words --- nothing! She took it and came back to the man with an apology.


Verdict:
Make sure the credit cards in your wallet are yours!

Check the name on the card every time you sign for something and/or the card is taken away for even a short period of time. Many people just take back the credit card without even looking at it, "assuming" that it is theirs.

DEVELOP THE HABIT OF CHECKING YOUR CREDIT CARD EACH TIME IT IS RETURNED TO YOU AFTER A TRANSACTION!

SCENE #3...
A customer went into a pizza restaurant to pick up her order that she had called in. She paid by using her Visa Check Card which, of course, is linked directly to her checking account. The young man behind the counter took her card, swiped it then laid it on the counter as he waited for the approval, which is pretty standard procedure.

While he waited, he picked up his cell phone and started dialing. She noticed the phone but didn't give it any thought, nothing seemed out of the ordinary until she heard a click that sounded like the phone had taken a picture. He then gave the woman her card back but kept the phone in his hand as if he was still pressing buttons.

It then dawned on her, he had just taken a photo of her credit card. He set his phone on the counter, leaving it open. About five seconds later, I heard the chime that tells you that the picture has been saved. Needless to say, she immediately canceled that card.


THE REMEDY:
Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Whenever you are using your credit card take caution and don't be careless. Notice who is standing near you and what they are doing when you use your card.

Be aware of phones, because many have a cameras in them these days. When you are in a restaurant and the waiter/waitress brings your card and receipt for you to sign, make sure you scratch the number off. The truth is that they can get you even when you are careful, but don't make it easy for them.

FORWARD THIS TO AS MANY PEOPLE AS YOU CAN THINK OF AND LET'S GET THE WORD OUT. THE BEST REMEDY... BE ULTRA AWARE!


Warmly, Carolyn


P.S. I'm away until May 22nd now... off to Tucson, Arizona with Richard to teach a seminar on "Bettering Your Relationship." See you upon my return.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Emma said...

I've heard that thieves check stolen credit cards, whether they are usable or not, by charging money for charitable donations and only after this checking they use plastics. They are so tricky and dangerous nowadays, yikes!

2:35 AM

 
Anonymous Sharon said...

I believe there is one more thing to do concerning your credit card safety. If you realize that your credit card is lost or stolen, you can also freeze your credit report in order not to fall a victim of identity theft.

4:24 AM

 

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