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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

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In the day and age of online banking and internet shopping it's no wonder that consumers are becoming more and more comfortable with giving away their bank details. This attitude has inadvertently lead to the rise of fraud as hackers and scammers come into contact with growing numbers of people who use the web for business and leisure. Credit card fraud isn't inevitable however and consumers and banks alike can work together to prevent this from happening.

The first port of call for anyone looking to prevent credit card fraud is to never use a site you don't trust. The rise in fraud has a direct link to 'phishing'; a type of scam whereby fraudsters create opportunities for card holders to unwittingly enter their details and personal information. If you are not purchasing something the use of card details is generally not required so be suspicious if this is the case. Protect your card details and don't give them out to people who companies you do not know or have never met.

Shopping online is an activity enjoyed by millions of people across the globe and web users shouldn't be put off by the threat of credit card fraud but should be vigilant. If you get a bad feeling from an online store or something happens to raise your suspicion simply move your business on elsewhere. Icons that signify 'secure online banking' can easily be replicated by fraudsters so it's advisable to shop from reputable brands or online equivalents of recognised and respected high street names.

Finally, card holders shouldn't leave the security of their details entirely up to the banks. Today's providers work hard to stay up to date with the latest anti-virus technologies and banking software is one of the fastest growing sectors, simply in a bid to keep up with hackers and fraudsters alike. That said, 90% of credit card fraud is linked to weaknesses in individual's home computers that lack basic virus protection. Installing an anti-virus software package or Firewall will arm your home PC against attack and invasion, thus allowing you to shop safely online.

Are you a credit card holder? Do your bit to prevent credit card fraud by protecting your home computer, only giving out your details when necessary and keeping your wits about you when shopping online.



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