Protect Yourself from Credit Card Malpractices

By BankBazaar | May 10, 2012

As credit cards have risen significantly in popularity, with people managing a number of credit cards for personal and professional use, so has an increase in threats and misuse of credit cards. Over the last couple of years, people have shown a high preference for plastic money and its features over the more liquid form of cash in hand. Although people justify this by claiming that credit cards provide them with increased security features than what cash in hand would ever offer. However, threats associated with plastic money have increased with fraudulent transactions becoming the norm of the day. In such a scenario, it is important for a credit card user to protect himself against all such threats and safeguard his privacy, in the face of increased transactional varsities. When credit cards are stolen, their misuse can occur in a number of forms such as making unauthorized purchase of transactions, duplication of credit card and credit card information, illicit online transactions and other malpractices.

In order to curb such practices, banks have begun to provide protection to cardholders against any form of misuse and fraudulent transactions. They have also entered into partnerships with card protection providers. While this service was initially opened for eligible premium cardholders, due to the high net value of such clients, regular clients have also shown an increased interest in these protection services. While premium card holders enjoy this insurance facility at no extra cost at all, as this cover is built on to their card, regular cardholders have to pay a minimal fee every month, that will be credited to their monthly credit card statement as it is an additional facility.  While debit cards are provided protection against fraudulent purchases made at Point of Sale terminals, credit cards are protected against fraudulent online purchases, identity protection and other offline purchases. In the normal course, premium credit card holders are not protected against fraudulent ATM and online transactions. These days, credit cards provide protection to card holders against all fraudulent transactions that are carried out with your lost credit card, for a period of up to 24 hours prior to reporting the loss. Sometimes, protection for debit cards and credit cards may not exceed 12 hours prior to the reporting of loss. This feature however, is subject to the terms and conditions of the bank and the credit card protection provider.

In order to sign yourself up for this insurance scheme, you must get yourself registered with your credit card issuer. Alternatively, you can also register yourself directly with your credit card protection provider. Then, instead of reporting the loss immediately to the bank, you must inform your credit card protection provider first of the loss via its 24 hour toll free number, followed by conveying the information to the bank. Also, since banks have paved the way for a centralized system of networking in the country, credit cards users, in order to report loss of credit cards that belong to different banks are not required to report the loss to all such banks. They need to inform just one bank and the information will be communicated to other banks as well. The major difference between being insured with your credit card issuer and the credit card protection provider is that credit card protection providers usually do not offer any cover for fraudulent transactions on online platforms. They provide insurance covers only for lost and stolen cards. The amount provided for cover is also quite minimal and if the fraudster ends up misusing your credit card for a greater sum of money, then you will be liable to settle the dues for the rest of the amount, although it pertains to a fraudulent transaction. Opting for a personal loan or any other kind of loan to finance such liabilities should definitely not be your option in situations where you might be cash strapped. Therefore report any fraud as it comes to your notice.

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