Paying for things with your debit card is likely second nature by now. Many people use their debit cards every single day, often multiple times per day, for everything from a cup of coffee,lunch, or paying their electric bill.
However, that doesn’t mean that debit cards aren’t susceptible to fraud, and that things can’t go wrong. In fact, there are hundreds of thousands of reports of debit card fraud each year, and many cases take a considerable amount of time to resolve with the issuing bank.
Don’t let yourself be the victim of debit card fraud. Keep reading before you swipe your debit card in the checkout line.
Avoid Gas Stations
Gas stations are a common place for thieves to steal debit card information. How do they do it? The answer is surprisingly simple.
Most crooks that steal debit card information from gas stations put a card reading device in the pump. When you swipe your card and enter your pin, the card reader will collect the magnetic stripe data on the back of the card along with the pin number that you entered. From there, thieves can make a duplicate card from a blank one, and use it online or pretty much anywhere they want to. However, most fraudulent charges will appear to be online purchases,as online purchases don’t require a real looking credit card like in-store purchases do – just the right information.
Crooks who figure out the scam can easily take advantage of hundreds of people or more per day.
Restaurants may seem safe, but your card is likely out of your sight for a moment before you sign your check. That means that it only takes one bad seed to write your card number and information down to commit fraud or sell it later.
Use Credit Instead
So using your debit card can be dangerous, but what should you do? The answer is simple: use your credit card or the credit option more. You’ll be better protected in the long run.