What Is Credit Card Skimming & How Can You Protect Your Online Activities?

Are you a credit or debit card holder? Here’s how you can protect yourself from credit card skimming or fraud.

Skimming goes by many names, and fraudsters have multiple methods. While online protection, mainly through software, is essential, sometimes the methods are not strictly virtual.

Comments from casinoalpha.ie reveal that certain physical ATMs can be vulnerable.

Your card is scanned there, and thieves will make a copy, hoping it will work. If your account is locked with the classic PIN and a password, these things will be limited.

How does card skimming works?

Skimmers can be hard to spot. Skimming is a method where stealers illegally install a device on card readers and they make it look like almost invisible. It’s as if it does not belong there.

This device collects information from your card and later on, the gathered information is recovered. It will be used by the stealers to make fraudulent purchases.

Thieves can even sell these stolen information online.

Anyone can be affected if they are credit or debit card holders at ATMs, gas pumps, and others.

Fraud losses can come in five types:

– remote purchase (card not present or CNP)
– counterfeit
– lost and stolen
– card not received
– card ID theft

In January 2021, Romanian Adrian Fichidu was put behind bars for five years. He illegally installed skimming devices on ATMs and such an online act costed $1.5 million from a thousand bank customers.

In UK, a total of £574.2 million of fraud losses has been recorded in 2020. The figure showed a signifcant decrease of seven percent decrease in 2019 which was £620.6 million.

How can you avoid card skimmers?

1. Make sure to sign up your account for alerts. You will be aware of any questionable transaction in your account through this as you will be alerted of a potentially fraudulent arrangement.

2. Lessen the papers. Stealers can still gain information from these documents.

3. Destroy your old and inactive cards.

4. Use machines that are situated in public. For extra protection, use ATMs inside the bank.

5. Make sure to never keep all your eggs in one basket. Divide your funds and keep them in multiple accounts.

6. Beware of phishing scams, this a type of scam online.

7. Secure your data by not clicking unsafe links, signing up to an antivirus service, creating strong passwords, and noting the activities you did in your account.

8. Have a secured connection. One way to spot a not secured service connection is its links does not have the prefix “HTTPS”.

If you have noticed a suspicious activity, report it as soon as possible. Notify your bank about the matter.

Your bank will conduct an investigation to the transactions made. It will collect pieces of evidence and after a certain period, the bank will issue a decision on the claims.

Depending on the gathered details, the claims will result in one of these two – rejection or confirmation.

If the customer’s claim gets rejected, no reimbursement will happen.

If confirmed, the customer will be given a chargeback.

Losses are refunded by most banks if scam is proven. Take note that this process will take a lot of time. There’s also a high percentage in terms of banks and card companies refunds.

If rejected, what should you do? To whom should you go to? In rejected complaints, the last authority is the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Thieves will always go after your money. The best thing to do to avoid them is to be vigilant. It will require time and effort to protect yourself and your funds. Always inspect before swiping.

According to Fraud – The Facts 2021 (The Definitive Overview Of Payment Industry Fraud), finance industry are already discussing boosting protection of customers by investing in advanced security systems.

Creating fraud screening detection tools, working with government and law enforcement, and putting funds on special unit police are also being tackled.

Leave a Comment