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If you’re the kind of person who likes to rely on your credit card then you’ll need to read through these common credit card scams currently being perpetrated around the world.
1) The Skimmer
These little contraptions affix to ATMs in secretive ways you’d never notice unless you were specifically looking for them. When you swipe your credit card or debit card, the skimmer reads your information and sends it on to whomever set up the device in the first place. Some scammers will even set up cameras alongside their skimmer in order to capture victim’s button presses, as well. More often than not, credit card skimmers can be found in gas stations.
2) The False Jury Duty Scam
In this scam, the perpetrator will call their victim, claiming that the victim has missed an assigned jury duty and as a result, a bench warrant has been put out for their arrest. The worried individual will then proceed to do whatever they can to get out of the trouble, giving the caller a lot of personal information — including credit card numbers. This scam has been extremely popular in 2017, especially in Colorado, where several area seniors have fallen victim to this easily avoidable crime.
3) The Fake ID Scam
In recent years, innovative criminals have resorted to creating entire fake identities and even shell corporations that could lend legitimacy to their credit history. They then purchase credit cards and run up huge tabs before the credit card company goes looking for the bill, only to discover that they’re hunting a ghost. In early 2017, two Jersey City jewelry store owners were sentenced after using this technique to steal somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 million before they were apprehended.
4) The Defective Chip Card Scam
These scammers call their customers, claiming to be the victim’s bank and tell them that their brand new chip card is defective or say that it’s time to receive their new chip card. Either way, the result is the same: the scammer asks for the victim’s personal information in order to get the ball rolling, only to turn around and use that personal info to run up huge credit charges.
5) Better Credit Card Deals
Some scammers will call their victims and pose as executives working for the credit card company itself. There’s even a trick they sometimes use to gain a victim’s trust –Known as the ‘no hang-up scam– where they ask you to hang up and call the number on the back of the card. However, the scammer doesn’t hang up and spoofs the dile-tone, leaving the call still connected. When you come back the scammer’s accomplice answers and impersonates whoever you thought you’d called and continues with the scam, asking you for your personal information to finalize the details and get everything all set up for you.
It’s relatively common knowledge that you should never, ever give out any personal information to anyone on the phone, even if they claim to be from an official source.
And no credit card company is going to actually call and solicit private information from you over the phone or via email.
6) Be Especially Careful in These Seven States
Nevada, Colorado, Maryland, New Hampshire, Alaska, Washington, and Oregon report the highest instances of credit card fraud in the United States. As a result, it’s likely a good idea to be extra vigilant when you’re in these areas. If you’re hoping to avoid a skimmer hiding at an ATM, just jiggle the card reader before you swipe. If it’s loose, it’s best not to trust it.
7) The In-House Scammer
Corrupt service industry personnel like waiters will double scan credit cards, once to apply your meal charges and once into a secret scanner they’ve brought that can store your credit information for future use. Unfortunately, this one is generally tough to avoid, since it is very commonplace to give your card to an employee in a restaurant and allow them to carry it out of sight.
8) Companies Aren’t Immune, Either
More than one major company, including Apple, Target, Sony, and more, have been the victim of attacks that have compromised the personal information of their users. Take, for instance, the attack on TJ Maxx in 2006 that exposed more than 94 million customer credit cards. The person responsible, Albert Gonzalez, was leading a 12-person ring of hackers. They’d raised more than a billion dollars before being apprehended.