Your Credit Card Activities
Credit cards have
become a preferred way of purchasing for many. They are convenient, accepted
by most stores, eliminate the need to carry cash, often easier to use
than a check and they can temporarily delay when you have to pay for your
purchases. Along with these benefits, comes the risk that a thief will
steal your card or your card information. If that happens, the thief can
then charge purchases items to your account. Here are some guidelines
to protect your credit card activities:
Your Credit Cards
- Only have as many
cards as you need and carry as few as possible.
- Keep seldom used
cards in a safe place.
- Keep a list of
your credit card numbers and issuing companies' phone numbers in a secure
- If you are expecting
a new or re-issued credit card and do not receive it, contact the issuing
- Activate and sign
any new cards immediately when you receive them.
- If possible, get
a credit card with your picture on it.
Credit Card Information
- Never write your
PIN number on your cards.
- Never give credit
card information over the phone unless you initiated the call.
- If your credit
card statement does not arrive as expected, contact the issuing company
to make sure that someone else did not change your address and is receiving
- When writing a
check to pay your credit card bill, do not put the full credit card
account number on the Memo line. Just use the last four digits.
Use of Your Credit Card
- Never lend your
card to someone else. They could use it improperly or it could be stolen.
- Always total the
receipt and draw lines through unused spaces on the receipt.
- Never sign a blank
- When using your
card, be sure to get it back and take the receipt.
- Keep all your credit
card receipts and compare them to your account statement.
In Case of Problems
- If your credit
card is lost, contact the issuing company immediately.
- If you believe
your card was stolen, contact the police and issuing company immediately.
- If your wallet
or purse is stolen, contact all your credit card issuers to report the
- Most card companies
have a toll-free number for reporting stolen or missing cards. Some
companies provide 24-hour service. By law, once you report the loss
or theft, you have no further liability for unauthorized charges. In
any event, your maximum liability under federal law is $50.