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Nowadays, basic precautions are no longer enough for those who try to keep their credit card information safe. Hacking software is getting more and more sophisticated and easier to get, making a credit card breach just a matter of time. But with vigilance, the damage from a breach can be decreased.

What to do if you suspect that your credit card number has been compromised?

    • Check your statement and continue monitoring

One of the first steps you should take at once is looking for any unauthorized charges on your bank statement. Report these transactions to the card issuer as quickly as possible. Be sure to send the letter to the address provided for billing errors. Also, be aware that fraudsters often make payments of only a few cents to check the viability of the account. So if you see purchases of 10 cents or 20 cents, that could be a sign that your information has been compromised.

    • Call your bank

If you suspect any fraudulent activity on your account, contact your bank directly to report the situation and get an advice. Reread your bank policy about fraudulent activity and your rights and obligations as a cardholder. Most banks will work with you to trace the fraudulent activity and monitor your account. Once you have contacted the credit card company, they’ll give you instructions and you should complete them step by step.

    • Replace your credit card

Change your PIN and make it challenging. Put an end to any more unauthorised charges by replacing your card. You should always make sure you have a strong PIN and account password (not your birthday or pet’s name).

    • Sign up for a fraud monitoring service

If you feel concerned about future credit card breaches and your card details security, most credit card companies offer monitoring services for free.

What are Visa, AmEx and MasterCard policies when credit card digits are stolen?

Visa customers are fully covered if their card information is used in fraud activity and are not responsible for any unauthorized charges, whether the transaction is made online or off.

American Express has the same principles. According to the company policy if some fraudulent activity is detected, the cardholder will be contacted in no time. If a fraudulent charge is detected a refund will be made while the issue will be in the process of investigation.

MasterCard has a similar policy and the customers only pay for authorized transactions. The company declares that as long as an account is in good standing, the cardholder has taken reasonable care in protecting his card, and has not reported any unauthorized charges in the past 12 months, he will be fully covered.

So, be attentive and vigilant and you’ll catch any fraudulent activity in its early stage and avoid all the negative consequences.

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