DEBIT CARD FRAUD ALERT!
First, what is debit card fraud? Debit card fraud occurs when a criminal gains access to your debit card number—and in some cases, personal identification number (PIN)—to make unauthorized purchases or withdraw cash from your account. There are many different methods of obtaining your information, from lost cards to hackers gaining access to your data from an insecure computer or network or falling prey to a scam and providing this information to criminals on our own.
How to Detect & Protect Yourself from Debit Card Fraud
When your debit card is used fraudulently, the money goes missing from your account instantly. Payments you have scheduled or checks you have mailed may bounce, and you may not be able to afford necessities. It can take a while for the fraud to be cleared up and the money restored to your account.
Debit card fraud occurs when a thief accesses your card or PIN number and makes unauthorized transactions. Keep your card & PIN numbers always secure. Do not share your numbers.
The easiest way to spot debit card fraud is to sign up for online account access and download our CARDNAV app to your phone so you can constantly monitor your account for suspicious activity.
Signing up for CARDNAV notification alerts on your mobile device, going paperless, destroying old debit cards, and protecting mobile devices are recommended ways to help prevent debit card fraud.
If you find evidence of debit card fraud, contact us immediately and report the activity.
The most efficient ways to detect problems early is to sign up for online account access if you have not already. Check your balance and recent transactions daily. The sooner you detect fraud, the easier it will be to limit its impact on your finances and your life. If you see unfamiliar transactions, call the credit union right away. If you are the forgetful type, start hanging on to the receipts from your debit card transactions so you can compare these against your online transactions. Download and install our CardNav app to your phone. Set the app to notify you of all debit card transactions. This will be an instant alert each time your card is used, online or in person.
If you choose to not use or do not have access to our online features, you can still keep tabs on your recent transactions by calling our office when you have any concerns. At the very least, you should review your monthly statement as soon as you receive it and check your account balance frequently. Our lives are busy, and it can take much longer to detect fraud using these methods.
Nine Ways to Protect Yourself
While you may not have any control over hackers and other thieves, there are many things you can control that will help you avoid becoming a victim.
- Sign up for CardNav & Notification Alerts
In addition to checking your balance and recent transactions online daily with our online access feature, you can also install our CardNav app and sign up for card use notification alerts right on your mobile device. If these notifications are turned on, the app will notify you of all activity associated with your debit card. You can set spending limits, location limits & shut your card off in an emergency. The Flasher Community Credit Union HIGHLY RECOMMENDS that our members with debit cards use this mobile app to protect their accounts.
- Go Paperless
Signing up for e-statements will eliminate the possibility of having account information stolen from your mailbox. Shredding existing statements and debit card receipts using a paper shredder when you are done with them will significantly reduce the possibility of having account information stolen from your trash.
- Don’t Make Online Purchases with Your Debit Card
Use a credit card, which offers greater protection against fraud, rather than a debit card.
- Stick to Using Only ATM Machines at Financial Institutions
Financial institution ATMs tend to have better security (video cameras) than automated teller machines at convenience stores, restaurants, and other places. Did you know that withdrawing ATM cash from your Flasher Community Credit Union ATM card at any CO-OP participating credit union ATM machine has no fees? You can find no fee ATM locations right from your CardNav App!
- Destroy Old Debit Cards
Some shredders will take care of this for you; otherwise, your old card floating around puts your information at risk.
- Don’t Keep All Your Money in One Place
If your checking account is compromised, you want to be able to access cash from another source to pay for necessities and meet your financial obligations. The staff at the Flasher Community Credit Union are ready to help you with this if the need arises.
- Beware of Phishing Scams
When checking your email or doing business online, make sure you know who you are interacting with. An identity thief may set up a phishing web site that looks like it belongs to your bank or another business you have an account with. In reality, the scammer is looking to get access to your personal information and may attempt to access your bank account.
- Protect Your Computer and Mobile Devices
Use firewall, anti-virus, and anti-spyware software on your computer and mobile devices, while keeping it updated regularly.
- Use a Secured Network
Do not do financial transactions online, when using your mobile devices or computer in a public place or over an unsecured network.
What to Do If Fraud Happens to You
If you learn that your debit card or account information has been compromised, contact our office immediately to limit the damage, and limit your financial responsibility for the fraud. Make contact immediately by phone and follow up with a detailed letter including the details of the fraudulent transactions, and any ideas you have about how your account may have been compromised. If you have the CardNav app, shut off your card to avoid additional use and contact our office immediately. The sooner you contact us, the likelihood of a better outcome for you!