The importance of credit card security: Tips for protecting your personal information

credit card

Over the last few years, the amount of credit card scams happening in India has increased significantly. Fraudsters are developing increasingly elaborate ways to fool people and steal their credit card details. The problem has only worsened since an ever-increasing number of people have access to cards as banks have relaxed credit card eligibility norms. To protect yourself from getting your credit card details leaked or stolen, you should be aware of and follow some important security measures. 

In this brief article, take look at some credit card security tips that you can follow to help keep your credit card information secure. 

  • Set a strong password/PIN for your card 

Ensure that you choose a strong password/PIN that cannot be guessed by fraudsters easily. Set your PIN at random, meaning it should not be related to any important dates in your life such as birthdays, anniversaries, etc. Similarly, passwords must be chosen at random and must be unrelated to any aspects of your life, making it harder for hostile parties to hack your credit card. You should also keep changing your credit card password/PIN every few months as a precautionary measure. 

  • Only shop through trusted sites/stores

Ensure that you only use your credit card at reputable and well-known institutions, hotels, stores, etc. Avoid using your credit card for purchasing items from unknown sources, as it may lead to your card details getting leaked. While shopping online, make sure you buy only from legitimate businesses, and avoid entering your credit card information on unsecured websites that do not have ‘https’ in their URL. Do not save your credit card details on your phone or computer. 

  • Use your credit card on secure networks 

If you are shopping with your credit card online, make sure you are connected to a secure internet network, such as your home Wi-Fi or through your personal mobile internet connection. Avoid using public Wi-Fi services to make online payments through your credit card. It is likely that your credit card information might get stolen through a public Wi-Fi network (airport wi-fi, hotel wi-fi, etc), as these do not generally offer much security.

  • Enable two-factor authentication 

Two-factor authentication is one of the most powerful security tools at your disposal. Enabling two-factor authentication ensures that there is an added layer of security for your credit card. Even if your physical credit card gets stolen, the hostile parties would not be able to make any purchases through the card without also having access to your phone number or email. 

  • Regularly analyse credit card transactions

Go through the transaction history on your credit card periodically to ensure that you can recognise or pick out any previously unseen transactions made on your credit card by malicious parties. If there are indeed any such transactions on your credit card, immediately flag them to your bank as fraudulent. You should also keep your contact details updated at the bank, so the bank can easily communicate with you in case any credit card-related security issues come up. 

Follow all the precautionary measures mentioned above and educate your friends and family to increase awareness. By being proactively aware of the kind of credit card scams going around, you can take the right steps to keep yourself protected against these threats. In the event that your credit card is compromised, connect with your bank immediately to take remedial measures. 

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