While you may be working hard to repair your credit, there are people out there working hard to thwart your efforts by stealing your information. And even though security measures are always being improved to protect you against scammers, they are always trying to find ways around the walls.
To keep yourself and your money safe, stay in the know about the current scams so you can take measures to protect yourself. Here are three common ones you may not know about.
1. Fraudulent EMV Card Information Requests
If you haven’t heard, in 2016 all credit and debit cards are being replaced with cards that have an EMV chip, which adds an extra layer of security to your card. The new cards are slowly being sent out to replace your current cards.
Ironically, scammers are taking advantage of the slow-paced release of the new EMV credit cards. They are sending out emails posing as credit card companies notifying individuals that their new credit card is ready, but they must verify their personal information before it is sent.
To avoid being a victim of this scam, know that your credit card company and financial institution will never use email as its first method of contact to verify your information. If you are unsure of whether an email from your financial institution or credit card company is legitimate, call the number on the back of your card to find out.
2. Mobile Wallet Thieves
With the new chip-embedded cards preventing the unauthorized use of your card in a physical setting, scammers are taking advantage of the widespread adoption of mobile wallets to use your credit card.
All they need is your credit card number and expiration date, and a few google searches to figure out your security questions. It’s not hard to take a secret picture of someone sliding their card at the store. Then googling their name to find out their mother-in-law’s maiden name or other common security questions. And just like that – they added your credit card to a mobile wallet and can instantly use it to make purchases.
To protect yourself from mobile wallet thieves, be vigilant in tracking your expenses. Go online every day to make sure there are no suspicious charges or activities going on. This is the best way to make sure you are not being scammed.
3. One Dollar Scam
But because so many people are being vigilant about tracking their financial activity, scammers are testing the waters to find out who is the most vulnerable. They do this by making a series of small transactions, usually one dollar or less, to see if you’re really paying attention to what’s going on with your credit card and bank accounts. If you don’t question even the smallest of suspicious charges on your credit card statement, you might find that you were scammed out of thousands of dollars on your next statement.
The only way to protect yourself from this and many other scams is to be proactive. Call your credit card company about any suspicious activity – no matter how small the transaction may be. Scammers are getting smarter and trickier, so you must be, as well.