Credit card fraud, which is a form of financial fraud, has become a common practice in today’s world. The United States has an estimated $1 billion dollars in various credit card fraud practices each year. Therefore, it is important to understand ways of preventing and reporting lost or stolen credit cards.
Credit card fraud can be prevented by exercising some practical safety precautions. These include:
- Don’t give out credit card or PIN number unless dealing with trustworthy business
- Destroy receipts immediately or store them in a safe location
- Never leave cards out in the open
- Don’t write PIN numbers and store them in your wallet
- Enroll in Online Statements that allow you to view charges instantly online
An important step is to regularly obtain credit reports. Credit reports help you to determine what outstanding loans and obligations are under your name.
It is imperative to report your card stolen immediately to the issuer of the original card. Many companies have 24 hour phone lines to report lost or stolen cards. In addition, other agencies below can be contacted:
- The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – submits your complaint to a center that lists fraud across the country to help local law enforcement
- Your local Consumer Protection Agency
Under federal law, the maximum liability of card holders for lost or stolen credit cards is $50 upon reporting.
An experienced criminal attorney can help to assist you in dealing with credit card fraud. In addition, an attorney can help you to bring a cause of action against any individual found that used your credit card.