With summer in full swing, many of us are planning vacations, enjoying outdoor activities, and making the most of the warm weather. However, while you’re out enjoying the sun, scammers are working tirelessly to exploit unsuspecting individuals and commit credit card fraud. To protect yourself and your hard-earned money, you must be aware of the types of credit card fraud and stay updated on the worst new credit card scams. Let’s dive into the details and learn how to safeguard ourselves against these financial predators.

Common scams to be aware of

Identity theft

One of the most common types of credit card fraud is identity theft. Scammers are constantly devising new techniques to steal personal information and use it to make unauthorized purchases. They may target you through phishing emails, phone calls, or even by installing skimming devices at ATMs or point-of-sale terminals. It is essential to remain vigilant and cautious when sharing personal information, especially online.

Counterfeit cards

Another prevalent credit card scam is counterfeit cards. Fraudsters use stolen card information to create fake cards, which they use to make purchases or withdraw cash. These counterfeit cards can be challenging to spot, as scammers have become increasingly sophisticated in replicating the appearance of genuine cards. Regularly monitoring your credit card statements and reporting any suspicious activity to your issuer can help mitigate the risk of falling victim to this scam.

Online shopping

Furthermore, online shopping scams are on the rise, particularly during summer, when people tend to shop more frequently. These scams often involve fake websites, enticing offers, and counterfeit products. When making online purchases, it’s crucial to stick to reputable websites, ensure the website is secure (look for “https” in the URL), and verify the seller’s legitimacy before sharing your credit card details.

Contactless payment fraud

As technology advances, so do the methods employed by scammers. Contactless payment fraud is one of the worst new credit card scams to watch out for. With the increasing popularity of contactless payments, criminals can now use wireless card readers to intercept payment information from your card without physical contact. They may do this by standing close to you in a crowded place or using devices that can read card information from a distance. To protect yourself, consider using an RFID-blocking wallet or card sleeve and regularly monitor your card statements for any unauthorized transactions.

SIM card swapping

Another recent credit card scam gaining traction is SIM card swapping. This technique involves fraudsters tricking mobile network providers into transferring a victim’s phone number to a new SIM card under their control. Once they gain control of the phone number, they can reset passwords and gain access to various accounts, including credit cards linked to those accounts. To prevent SIM card swapping, contact your mobile network provider and inquire about additional security measures, such as requiring an in-person visit or a unique PIN for SIM card replacements.

How to prevent falling victim to these scams

To avoid becoming a victim of credit card fraud, it’s essential to adopt certain preventive measures. Firstly, regularly monitor your credit card statements, checking for unauthorized charges. If you spot any discrepancies, report them immediately to your credit card issuer. Secondly, never share sensitive information like your Social Security number or credit card details via email or phone, especially if you did not initiate the contact. Legitimate institutions will never ask for this information in unsolicited communications.

Lastly, educate yourself about the latest credit card scams and stay informed about current trends in fraud. Websites like Forbes Advisor offer valuable insights and updates on the evolving world of credit card fraud, equipping you with the knowledge to protect yourself effectively.

Bottom line

As you embark on your summer adventures, don’t let credit card fraud ruin your fun. You can stay one step ahead of scammers by being aware of the types of credit card fraud and staying informed about the worst new credit card scams. Remain cautious, regularly monitor your credit card activity, and take proactive measures to safeguard your personal information. With a bit of diligence, you can enjoy a worry-free summer while keeping your finances secure.

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