Protect Yourself Against Credit Card Fraud

With the Equifax data breach, and other hacking episodes of late, most people are becoming increasingly worried about protecting their personal information and their credit. Of course, you probably know that you can purchase this kind of protection through your insurance company and other entities, such as financial institutions.

However, we’d like to discuss some measures you can take to protect yourself now. These steps won’t cost you anything, are relatively simple, and can be enacted right away.

If you are shopping online (and most of us are), you’ll want to clear your passwords and logins, especially if you’re at a public computer. Never allow a public computer to ‘save’ a password for you. Also, it’s kind of a pain, but changing your password frequently is a good way to protect yourself against would-be hackers. And, when you do buy something online, use your credit card, rather than your debit card. That way, if there is an unauthorized charge to your card, it’s easier to deal with since federal laws are stricter.

Have you ever gotten an email from an entity that claims to be, say Amazon, but something seems fishy? Well, they are phishing, and they will try to get your information by posing as legitimate and well-known businesses or banks. Be alert to these kinds of scams and do not give your information to them. Block them. If you do enter data online, make sure that the web site is secure and protected. If you are not sure, don’t enter it!

Go over your bank statements and credit card statements every month to ensure that unauthorized charges are not occurring. Also, request credit reports from the major credit reporting agencies to ensure that new credit cards, loans, etc are not being issued in your name.

Then, shred documents with financial information and personal information.

Do these simple things and if you’re still concerned, purchase fraud protection!