NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Imagine checking the balance on your savings or checking account at a local bank or online, only to discover that funds have been withdrawn without your approval. You later find out that essentially, you have been a victim of credit card fraud.
Instances of credit card fraud are becoming increasingly prevalent in The Bahamas.
In August 2018, Financial Services Minister Brent Symonette said that Bahamians have to exercise greater “caution” when using ATMs. His comments came on the heels of an unfortunate skimming incident that saw the reported removal of funds from some accounts at the Royal Bank of Canada. As such, instances of credit card fraud seem to be on the rise and the Royal Bahamas Police Force on Monday outlined a number of ways that persons can prevent and protect themselves from credit card fraud.
Here are some tips on how to prevent credit and debit card fraud:
- Don’t give your account number to anyone on the phone unless you’ve made the call.
- Carry your cards separately from your wallet. It can minimize your losses if someone steals your wallet or purse.
- During a transaction, keep your eye on your card. Make sure you get it back before you walk away.
- Open your bills promptly — or check them online often — and reconcile them with purchases.
- Report any questionable charges to the card issuer.
- Notify your card issuer if your address changes or if you will be traveling.
- Don’t write your account number on the outside of an envelope.
- Clear your logins and passwords. This is especially important if you’ve been working on a public computer.
- Be alert for phishing, a trick in which spam or pop-ups mimic legitimate banks or businesses to obtain your personal information, which they use to access your accounts. Always verify that you’re on a familiar Web site with security controls before entering personal data.
Article written by Whitley Cargill – Eyewitness News Online Intern