Computer Crime Research Center


Beware using cards online

Date: September 11, 2005
Source: Computer Crime Research Center
By: CCRC staff

LONDON (Reuters) - Half of adults used plastic to shop online last year, the UK payments association said on Thursday.

A report published by APACS (the Association for Payment Clearing Services) said 22 million adults bought goods and services online in 2004 totalling 16 billion pounds. APACS said it expected that figure to continue to rise over the next decade.

Last year, Britons made 262 million purchases using their plastic online. That equates to eight purchases every second. APACS believes that volume will increase more than four-fold to 38 per second in 10 years' time.

Here are some recommendations for plastic cards holders:

• Take an interest in insurance policy at purchase of a card. Take insurance always. Most likely, money for this service is already paid.

• Never write a PIN-code on a card.

• Never store the written down PIN-code together with a card. Learn a code by heart and do not store it in written form at all.

• Leave a sample of the signature on the back side of a card at once after its reception.

• Never transfer a card to other person. In case of need it is possible to make, for example, a family card.

• Never inform somebody the PIN-code. None (workers of the bank, the attendants of a cash dispenser, the inspector) has right to demand it.

• Do not leave a card without supervision, for example, in the machine, on a table at restaurant and so forth.

• Never phone to anybody number of the card. It is not known how many the person will hear your conversation, and whether there is no among them the one who can use heard number in the mercenary purposes.

• At loss cards phone about it immediately. If you have lost a debit card, call in bank which has given out it. It is necessary to inform representatives of payment system and the bank which has emitted a card at loss a credit card.

• Check movements of money on your card account not less often, than once a month. The special attention should be turned to operation after trips in which you used the card.

The safety precautions at a cash dispenser (ATM):

• Try to not use a cash dispenser in deserted places or in places where is the big congestion of people. You become too vulnerable object for a robbery in a deserted place, it is impossible to be confident, that nobody will see a PIN-code entered by you in crowd.

• Do not allow to extraneous people to see an entered PIN-code. It is quite possible, after that you will find out loss of a card, and hardly later and money from your card account.

• Be not mistaken at input of a PIN-code. Cash dispenser will detain your card after three erroneous inputs of a code.

• Be operative at use a cash dispenser. Certain time (30-45 seconds) is given on each operation. If during this time operation will not be completed, at the best the cash dispenser will return to you a card, in the worse - will detain it.

• Check up, whether you have taken away all from a cash dispenser. After finishing of operation you should have: a card, money, an extract about the made operation. If something does not suffice, and the cash dispenser did not inform you any additional information, here something wrong. Probably, you risk to fall a victim to swindlers. Do not trust anybody at a cash dispenser even if this person is dressed in the form of the employee of a cash dispenser service.

• Keep extracts on results of operation which are given out with a cash dispenser always. It will allow to keep account the taken off money and to supervise write-off of money from your account.

• Do not show somebody the wallet and money which you have received from a cash dispenser. It is not necessary to recalculate them before a cash dispenser. The machine is not mistaken, and if will be mistaken, will not answer you of anything intelligible.

The safety precautions at payment by a card in shop, restaurant, etc.:

• Never let out a card from a field of vision. It is access to your money. Imagine, that you give the cashier or the waiter all money at your account and ask him to take how many it is necessary.

• Never sign more than three checks at payment without the POS-terminal. The signature on the check is consent to write off the specified sum from your card account. At the place where you pay by means of a card without POS-terminal first check remains in the organization, second is sent by this organization to the bank and third remains at you as acknowledgement of made operation.

• Never sign check where the sum is not specified. Having signed such check, you enable to write off from your account more money than it is necessary.

• Cross out all empty fields after sign the check. Thus you will relieve the cashier of a temptation to enter there something superfluous.

• Demand check cancellation at incorrect registration

The safety precautions when paying by card on the Internet:

• Do not leave your personal and the card data at unknown sites. Take an interest in certain conferences. Look, where is the organization which you are going to pay. If there is no address or you don't trust it, think, whether costs to pay?

• Do not use card on which you have large sums of money for payment in the Internet. It is better to get a separate card for such purpose.

• Pay attention to the various certificates confirming safety of settlement through the given site.

• Address to bank at occurrence of the slightest suspicions about wrongful write-off of money from the account. You have certain term to refuse or challenge wrongful money write-off from your card account. Duration of this term should be specified in the bank which was giving out to you a card.

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