Credit Card Fraud

Written by Kevin Tavolaro
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Credit card fraud hurts cardholders, merchants, and card providers. Although there as always been a certain degree of credit fraud, the advent of the Internet has introduced many new options for the ambitious thief, necessitating constant developments in credit card security. The responsibility for preventing credit card fraud is shared by providers, cardholders, and merchants. Credit card providers and merchants must ensure that they implement the latest security measures, designed to protect your sensitive identity and accounting information. Cardholders must also be sure to follow common sense security guidelines in order to prevent their information from falling into the wrong hands.

Anti-Credit Card Fraud Services

Credit card providers offer several services designed to reduce fraud. One of the oldest methods is purchase tracking. Purchase tracking allows the provider to automatically monitor your account, taking note when any "red flags" show up in your spending habits. Red flags can include several large or suspicious purchases made within a short amount of time, or purchases made across a significant distance over a short span of time.

These flags can indicate that your card has been appropriated by someone else, who is using it fraudulently. When the company is alerted to one of these flags, they can put a hold on your account activity until they can contact you and confirm that the card is still in your possession.

Merchants, both brick-and-mortar, and online, are also equipped with tools for preventing credit card fraud. Credit card terminals, as well as their virtual counterparts, usually require identity verification. Most secure e-commerce sites prevent a transaction if the personal information provided in the interface is not consistent with the provider's database.

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