How to use your card safely and securely
To help prevent fraudulent use of your card, here are steps you should take.
- Sign new cards as soon as you receive them.
- Keep your card account numbers and personal identification number (PIN#) in a confidential place and separate from your cards.
- Check your cards periodically to make sure none are missing.
- Destroy and dispose of copies of receipts, airline tickets, travel itineraries, anything that displays your card numbers.
- Memorise your PIN.
- Check out unfamiliar companies by calling your local consumer protection agency.
- Don't provide information that you're uncomfortable giving.
- NEVER give anyone the password that you use to log on to your online account or Internet Service Provider.
- Don't provide financial account information unless you are paying for a purchase using that account.
What to do if you suspect fraud
If your card is lost call the bank or financial institution that issued your card immediately. Your issuer may want to cancel your current card and issue you a new one. Check with your issuer to verify that your mailing address has not been changed.
If you still have your card but fraudulent purchases have been made, call your issuer to report the fraud and request a new card.
You can be sure that your bank or financial institution will never ask for your card number or PIN code over an e-mail or phone. If you get such an e-mail it's most probably a fraudulent attempt called phishing. To avoid phishing attempts you should never give away personal financial information over the internet. Be sure you are using a secure web site when submitting your card number. Do not depend on displayed links in e-mails. Make it a habit to enter the address of any banking, shopping, auction or financial transaction website yourself.
Skimming is the theft of credit card information used in a legitimate transaction. The thief can use a small electronic device (skimmer) to swipe and store credit card numbers. Instances of skimming have been reported where the perpetrator has put a device or group of devices illicitly installed on an ATM. Recently-made ATMs now often run a picture of what the slot and keypad are supposed to look like as a background, so that consumers can identify foreign devices attached.
If you suspect skimming you should get in touch with your bank.
Shopping safely online with MasterCard
MasterCard continues to implement and enforce strict security features for online shopping. For consumers and merchants we have developed MasterCard SecureCode®. When you see the MasterCard SecureCode logo below in a web-shop, it means that you as the cardholder can use a one-time code or security device to purchase. If you have not received information about this, contact your card issuer. In addition, here are steps you can take.
- Check the seller's reputation.
- Learn as much as you can about companies or individuals before you do business with them.
- Check with consumer agencies to find out about complaints.
- See if the seller's Web site has a feedback forum where other people who have done business with the seller can put information about their experience with that seller.
- Ask your friends about their favourite online merchants.
- Stay vigilant. Just because a seller has no complaints or a good reputation doesn't guarantee that things will go smoothly for you.
- Before entering card details:
- Look for the padlock symbol.
- Look for MasterCard SecureCode™ sign as an endorsement of retailer’s security.
To learn more about an organisation:
- Check their web site for a feedback page where customers can offer complaints or praise.
- Ask others about online merchants and other organisations that they've dealt with.