I’m wondering if there is anyone left who has not been hit with credit card fraud. I have…twice in 2014. And while the bank was trying to “sort out the predators” ….I was unable to apply for any new credit for almost a year. How nice…I was being punished for someone else ripping me off!
I’m a woman who really likes not having to carry actual cash in my wallet for so many reasons. One – if it isn’t in my wallet, it isn’t likely to get spent. Two, I tend to worry about it disappearing somehow or someway. Did I walk away from my purse once or twice?…well yes. And three…the convenience of not having to prepare for the right amount of cash ahead of time…means one less trip to the ATM.
While trying to trace my steps leading to my latest credit card fraud, I’m quite certain the fraud occurred with the debit card purchase I made at a certain ‘unnamed store’…and while I love that place for what it is (often great clothes that are practically free) it may not be the greatest of places to use a credit card. Sorry, no offense to the ‘unnamed store’!
This is really about a change in my routine to use credit or debit cards to pay for everything I do. The reality is, there are places we spend money that may be less secure than major retail or service establishments who put a lot more into customer security and quality employee hiring and training. Perhaps that small business down the road doesn’t have the same crack security program in place.
Not paying attention to which places to use cash and which are safe to use your cards may be the difference in credit card fraud actually happening to you or not…just as it happened to me….twice. Pulling cash from your wallet instead of plastic may be the new wave of the future. While you won’t have the bank to back up your cash purchases if something goes wrong with the product…perhaps we should stop and think twice before we give into an impulse purchase.
My bank did eventually reimburse me…but the tie up of my credit worthiness was an inconvenience and simply unfair. When is it better to use cash rather than your credit card?….It’s time to pay attention.
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- Petra Hanley is a Social Media Administrator for the National Cybersecurity Institute.