Credit cards are an increasingly popular form of cashless payment. Among other things, they are increasingly used when buying on the Internet. However, the frequency of use increases the risk of credit card fraud. According to different estimates, the damage caused annually is more than 1.3 billion dollars. You should keep in mind that there are different forms of credit card fraud , to which you have to react differently.
The Different Types of Credit Fraud
- In order to be able to defraud with a credit card, the fraudsters do not have to have it directly. The basic data of the card are sufficient for purchases. But it remains that card theft is one of the most common forms of credit card fraud. After all, many cards are only secured with a signature, which means that they can be used for shopping immediately after the theft.
- Another form of credit card fraud can be through electronic data theft. Basically, you have to transfer your personal credit card details when shopping online. It is enough for fraudsters if they are over
- the card number
- the name of the card holder and
- the check digit of the card
to use them immediately without authorization.
- The third way that credit card fraud can take place is data theft from credit card providers or online retailers. In this case, hackers or fraudsters can steal and misuse credit cards on a large scale. It is clear that a credit card is never 100 percent secure, which is why you should always consider credit card fraud.
How to handle credit card fraud – what to do if you lose credit card?
You should react immediately to a credit card fraud. Only then can you avoid major damage. In a first step, it is necessary to immediately inform the bank of the theft or loss and to request that the account be blocked.
As a result, it is necessary to check the card sales and regular statements in your account. If you find any discrepancies, you must complain about damage immediately or report abusive debits to your financial institution immediately . This way you can avoid having to be liable for the credit card fraud yourself. It is also advisable to report the credit card loss to the police and file a complaint. You can find more information on payment card fraud on the official website of the police.
For the bank, this can serve as proof that your money will be refunded. In the last step, if you ask yourself the question: “What to do if you lose your credit card”, we recommend that you document and record everything exactly. These individual details count
- the exact date
- when your card was stolen or lost and
- when you initiated the block.
Credit card fraud blocking fees are not permitted
Keep in mind that banks and credit card providers cannot charge you for blocking your card. This is based on § 675 ff paragraph 4 of the BGB, i.e. the Civil Code. According to a ruling by the Federal Court of Justice in 2015, credit card providers and banks are also not allowed to charge any fees for a replacement card.
Timely complaint about credit card fraud is important
The topic “What to do if you lose a credit card” is also about complaints. This should be done as early as possible, but at the latest when you discover irregularities on your credit card statement or account transactions. If your account is debited with an unjustified debit, you have eight weeks to file a complaint from its specific point in time . It is important that you always complain in writing. Many banks offer their own form for this, which you should simply fill out and justify the claimed amounts. If you complain about card sales that you have proven not to have made yourself, the card provider must reimburse them.
The question of liability for credit card misuse is clearly regulated
If a credit card fraud has occurred and a loan has been applied for, for example, there can be different liability options. Basically, the law requires a maximum liability of USD 150.00 for you as a cardholder. This happens when your card has been stolen or misused. This regulation is laid down in § 675v of the German Civil Code. You can find out when you, as the cardholder, are liable for a lost card or for credit card fraud yourself in the individual terms and conditions of your card provider.
This affects the total amount of damage incurred. There is gross negligence if, for example, you do not quickly report the loss of the card or the fraud to the credit institution. The storage of PIN and credit card in the same place, for example in the wallet, is also classified as a resolution and has the consequence that the bank assumes no liability.