What to do in case of credit/payment card fraud: real life example!
This weekend E-Crime Expert encountered a financial fraud which happened to us in real life. Money was fraudulently withdrawn from our (Dan’s) account. Luckily, we immediately identified the fraud which enables us to cancel the card and report the fraud in order to be reimbursed.
1. How it could be detected:
i. Go log into your online banking account (Fig. 1)
(I am using a mobile platform for my online banking)
ii. Type your user name or card number and password (Fig. 2)
iii. Select one of your accounts and then go through your transaction records carefully and see if there is any transaction you do not recognize (this is how I identified the fraud in my VISA account).Fig. 3.
iv. Most likely the fraudulent transaction will be from a service provider or vendor that you had nothing to do with it (as it happened in my case) Fig. 4.
2. What to do if you suspect fraudulent activity:
Despite your best efforts, there is still a chance that you will become a victim of payment card fraud. You will save yourself time and worry by following the steps below:
- Call your financial institution immediately. You can find the phone number easily on the back of your card (Fig. 5).
It may want to cancel your current card and mail you a new one. Check to verify that your mailing address has not been changed.
- If you still have your card, but fraudulent purchases have been made on the account, call your financial institution, and ask them to issue you a new one.
- Contact the national credit bureaus to let them know you are a victim of fraud. They will place a “Fraud Alert” on your file. You can also request copies of your credit report, which you should review carefully. For North America: Equifax: 1-800-465-7166 or www.equifax.ca
TransUnion: 1-866-525-0262 or www.tuc.ca
- Diligently check your statements in the following months to make sure the problem has been completely resolved.
- Report the fraudulent activity to the proper authorities, including the police or to the Internet Crime Complaint Center:
To successfully fulfill your mission of how to contact MasterCard fraud,
- you can call 800-627-8372.
- If you’re not in the United States, contact MasterCard fraud by calling 636-722-7111.
- If it’s an emergency related to possible fraud, MasterCard will accept international collect calls.
- Call the bank or other organisation that issued your card, if you know the telephone number. They will immediately block your card and organise a replacement
- If you do not have your card issuer’s telephone number, use the menu on the Global Card Assistance Directory page for help.
To use the Global Card Assitance Service Directory Click here.
From the pull-down menu choose the country you are in now. Call the telephone number that appears in the right-hand box. Calls might be free but may carry local telecom fees if one dials using a mobile phone or calls from within a hotel.
If outside the US please make a reverse-charge call to +1 303 967 1096, if within the US, simply dial +1 800 847 2911.
3. What you need to be prepare to provide when calling:
- The name of your card issuer
- The type of card — for example, Visa Electron, Visa Classic, Visa Gold
- The country where the card was issued
It will help if you can also tell them:
- Your 16-digit Visa/MasterCard account number
- If you have your own card account or a partner card
- Your name as it is printed on the card
- The address where your statement is sent
- Your home telephone number
- How the card went missing or what transaction you find illegitimate
- Other personal details that will be used as a security check to confirm your identity
- The identity of the primary cardholder, if you are the secondary cardholder.
4. Tips to stay safe:
i. How to prevent identity theft
Identity theft involves acquiring another person’s identification information (such as a social insurance number or any unique identifier) without a person’s knowledge for the purpose of impersonating him or her to commit fraud. The best defense against identity theft is to prevent thieves from getting the information in the first place.
Here are guidelines to follow:
- Never leave your purse or wallet unattended – keep your personal data and information guarded at all times.
- Sign your credit and debit cards in permanent ink as soon as you receive them.
- Call your card issuer if a new or reissued card does not arrive when expected.
- Don’t carry your social insurance card, birth certificate, or passport in your wallet or purse unless it’s absolutely necessary. Cancel any inactive payment card accounts.
- Never throw away receipts in a public trash container. When disposing of receipts or old statements, be sure to destroy the areas where the account number is visible. In general, you should keep all your receipts in a safe place to refer to if you suspect suspicious activity.
- Check your statements frequently and carefully. Be sure you are familiar with all account activity on the statement. If you find an unauthorized or questionable transaction, call the appropriate organizations immediately.
- Do not write your credit or debit card account number on a cheque, or use it for identification when paying by other means.
- If your social insurance card or driver’s license is missing, contact the appropriate agency immediately.
- Never give any payment card, bank, or social insurance information to anyone by telephone, even if you made the call, unless you can positively verify that the call is legitimate and there is a true need for the information.
- Keep a list of all your credit accounts and bank accounts in a secure place so you can quickly call the issuers to inform them about missing or stolen cards. Include account numbers, expiration dates, and telephone numbers of customer service and fraud departments.
- Make a note of when your financial statements arrive each month. If your statements stop arriving, contact your bank immediately.
- Obtain a copy of your credit report once a year from one of the national credit bureaus. You are entitled to a free copy of your report if you are denied credit. Otherwise, most credit bureaus will charge a small fee. If the report data is incorrect, write the credit bureau immediately and keep a copy of your letter.
ii. How to prevent fraud while using your payment card
Payment cards are used everyday by billions of people throughout the world. By following the steps below, you will significantly reduce the chances of fraudulent activity occurring on your account:
- When making a purchase, keep your card in view at all times. Retrieve the card as soon as the transaction is complete and make sure it is yours.
- Memorize your passwords and personal identification numbers (PINs) so you do not have to write them down. Be aware of your surroundings; make sure no one is watching you input your PIN.
- Never sign a blank receipt slip. Draw a line through any blank amount lines that appear above the total amount line.
- Save all of your receipts so you can refer to them at a later time. Never discard your receipt in a public trash container.
- Do not provide your account number over the phone unless you are positive the call is legitimate and there is a legitimate purpose to disclose your account number. Never provide your number over the phone if you didn’t initiate the call.
- Avoid saying your account number aloud at a merchant location or over the phone if others can hear.
iii. How to prevent fraud while shopping online
Shopping online opens up a world of choices and convenience – as well as some risks that require extra vigilance. Here are some tips to ensure that your online shopping experience remains safe and enjoyable:
- Make sure you are doing business with a reputable Internet merchant. Check with the Better Business Bureau or provincial and local consumer agencies to find out about past complaints or experiences from other customers. You can also look for the following information on the website to check if a merchant is reputable:
- Information about the offer – make sure you learn all you can about the offer, including the delivery date, terms of warranty, cancellation policies, how to contact the company if you have questions, etc.
- Information about the merchant – make sure to find the company’s physical address and telephone number.
- Security – Reputable websites often provide information about how they protect your financial information when it is transmitted and stored.
- Guard your personal information. Don’t provide information that you are uncomfortable giving. Never give anyone the password that you use to log on to your Internet Service Provider or online bank account.
- Keep records. Print out all information about your online transaction and keep it in a safe place to refer to at a later time.
- Pay with a payment card – as this is often the safest way to pay online. In North America, the cardholder has the right to dispute charges if the goods or services were misrepresented or never delivered. Also, you are not responsible for fraudulent purchases made on your account.
- Make sure the merchant that you are dealing with has proper security measures in place. Your computer browser can tell you if the place where you are about to send the information is secure. Look for an unbroken key or closed lock at the bottom of the browser window. If you cannot determine this, do not put your credit or debit card information over the Internet.
- Hover the weblink on the browser you are using to see if there is no hidden link from a fake or illegitimate cloned website.
iv. Setting up your best security for your Visa Card:
Visa has developed several layers of fraud prevention and detection systems and programs, giving you multiple checkpoints for security to protect your business and make transactions more secure. Visa’s Layers of Security complement each other and work together, so by implementing multiple services you can help reduce your risk of fraud.
The Layers of Security:
Layer # 1 – Chip & PIN
Many Visa cards now contain a micro-computer chip that securely stores encrypted information to complete transactions. As well, Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) are used for cardholder authentication when chip cards are used in Canada. This helps make counterfeiting virtually impossible.
Layer # 2 – Verified by Visa
The Verified by Visa (VbV) program is a worldwide service that confirms a cardholder’s authenticity in real time. This helps protect merchants from fraudulent transactions and chargebacks, while protecting cardholders from unauthorized use of their Visa cards.
Layer # 3 – Three-digit Code (CVV2)
The CVV2 is a three-digit security code on all Visa cards that helps ensure a customer making an online or phone purchase has a genuine Visa card in hand.
Layer # 4 – Address Verification Service (AVS)
When fraudsters try to order online, by mail or by phone, AVS can help stop them in their tracks. Account number information obtained from a receipt or a stolen card does not include an address or postal code. AVS checks a cardholder’s address and/or postal code against the card issuer’s records in real time, giving you the opportunity to stop a transaction if desired.
Layer # 5 – Visa Advanced Authorization (VAA)
Available through most card issuers, VAA lets you immediately identify and respond to emerging fraud patterns and trends. As transactions are processed through VisaNet® Advanced Authorization, VAA evaluates an authorization request data in real time and assesses and assigns a risk rating – helping you better identify potential fraud.
5. Additional contact numbers for Canada only:
MasterCard Issuer Security Phone Numbers in Canada:
|BMO Bank of Montreal:||1-800-361-3361|
|Canadian Tire Bank:||1-800-459-6415|
|Capital One Canada:||1-800-481-3239|
|Credit Union Electronic Transaction Services:||1-800-567-8111|
|Direct Cash Bank:||1-888-466-4043|
|GE Money Canada:||1-800-243-2222|
|HSBC Bank Canada:||1-866-406-4722|
|National Bank of Canada:||1-888-622-2783|
|President’s Choice Bank:||1-866-246-7262|
|RBC Royal Bank:||1-800-361-0152|
|Walmart Financial Services Canada:||1-888-925-6218|
|Wells Fargo Financial:||1-888-295-0050|
If you have any question you could contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Additional information can be found at: www.e-crimeexppert.com
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