By Officer Larry Jacobs
When it comes to your credit cards, playing it safe should never be an option.
Credit cards have become part of our daily lives and their numbers will continue to expand as become more of a cashless society. As the numbers increase, so does the chance the more folks will become a victim of theft, fraud and scams.
Criminals out there would love for you to drop your guard and become nonchalant about protecting your credit cards.
There are a number of things that you can do to protect yourself from becoming a victim.
To start, you should never leave your credit cards unattended at work. According to some statistics I have seen, there are more credit card thefts in the workplace than in any other location.
Don’t leave your credit cards in your vehicle. This is a no-brainer.
Always check your card when it’s returned to you. You need to make sure it is your card and not some worthless one that has already been cancelled.
You should report lost or stolen credit cards immediately. First, call the credit card company to cancel the card to stop the fraudulent activity. Next, if it has been stolen, contact the police.
Make a list of all of your credit cards. While you’re at it, you should make a copy (front and back) of everything in your wallet or purse and keep it at your house. This way, if you lose your wallet or purse, you have all of that information handy.
Always check your monthly statement to look for unauthorized charges. If you access your statement online, you should check more frequently.
Never give your credit card number over the phone unless you’re dealing with a reputable company.
Finally, when using credit cards online, make sure the site is secure and, again, that you’re dealing with a reputable company.
Officer Larry Jacobs is the Crime Prevention Officer for the Sandy Springs Police Department. He can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.