What to Do If You Are a Victim of Credit Card Fraud

Credit card fraud is on the increase in many places where credit card is used for transactions. The most unfortunate thing is that credit card fraudsters are becoming more and more skillful and sophisticated such that even the most careful and security conscious credit card user is not safe from the activities of these fraudulent individuals. Although, a number of software applications such as binchecker and EMV chip have been introduced in order to checkmate such evil, there is a need for you to be on the alert and protect your credit card against any form of fraud. If you are a victim of credit card fraud, you don’t have to panic over it, the moment you discover that. Here are steps you should take when you are a victim of credit card fraud.

Report immediately to your credit card company

The first thing you should do is to report the fraud to your credit card company. This step is very crucial especially if the fraudster has not utilised your credit card for any transaction. If you make a report to your credit card company about any fraud on your credit card, the law in most jurisdictions and the Fair Credit Billing Act forbid the credit card company from charging you for any unauthorised transaction made with your card from the time the report is made. But if you fail to make any report about the credit card fraud, you are responsible for any transactions made via through your card.

Change your online passwords

To play safe, once you notice that you have fallen victim of credit card fraud, the second step you should take is to change your login details which include your passwords and usernames. You should also change your PIN numbers for all your banking accounts, credit cards and online store accounts. With these changes, the fraudster will not be able to do any other thing with your account. If you have the CardNavSM by CO-OP, you should turn off your cards immediately you find out that you are a victim of credit card fraud.

Report to the credit bureaus

The next thing you should do is to make a report to the credit bureaus about the fraud. It is enough to contact one of the three credit bureaus which include Equifax, Experian and TransUnion because once you inform one credit card company the rest will be notified. When you make the report to any of these bureaux, request that they put your credit card on a 90-day fraud alert. You can also ask for credit freeze which stops identity thieves from creating new account with your personal information. It also limit access to your credit report. If you apply for loan from a financial institution and access to your credit report is required by the financial institution before your application will be processed, the freeze will be temporary lifted.

File a police report

The next thing you should do is to file a police report. This is also very important because it will serve as a legal evidence that you are a victim of fraud. With the police report, it will also be possible for you to obtain credit freeze service free of charge. The report can be filed over the phone or in the police department or to a police agent that will be sent to your home. It all depends on what is obtainable in your locality. Provide the police with detailed information about fraud. So, before contacting the police, you should know the date the fraud occurred, the circumstances that resulted in the fraud, the amount stolen and other important information about the fraud.