How to educate your cardholders about credit card scams
Credit card scams are on the rise, and your cardholders could be potential targets. Since education is the best prevention, here are some tips to share with your cardholders:
- Don’t trust caller ID. Technology has made it incredibly easy for scammers to spoof phone numbers. If you receive calls from an unknown number from your hometown, you may be inclined to pick up the call as it could be a family member or old friend calling. But odds are good that it is a scam.
- Spot the imposters. Scammers often pretend to be someone you trust, such as a charity, a family member, or a company you are familiar with. Don’t send money or give out personal information in response to an unexpected request.If someone calls asking for money or personal information, hang up. If you think the caller might be telling the truth, call back to a number you know is genuine.
- Hang up on pre-recorded calls. If you answer the phone and hear a recorded sales pitch, hang up. These calls are illegal, and usually the product or service they are offering is not legitimate. Don’t try to escalate the situation by trying to speak with a real person or be taken off the list, because that could lead to more calls.
- Be skeptical about free trial offers. Some companies use free product trials to get you to sign up, and then bill monthly until you cancel the service. However, the cancellation policy may be complex, keeping you in a contract for years. Before you agree to a free trial, research the company and read the cancellation policy. And always review your monthly statements for charges you don’t recognize.
- Verify authentic callers. If you believe that a caller is legitimate or from a company you currently do business with, verify your information to confirm their legitimacy. Ask them to confirm your member or account number, and check that number against the number you know to be correct.
- Take your time. Scammers often prey on the consumer’s lack of knowledge and fear of missing out on an opportunity. If someone is rushing you to commit to their special offer that is only offered for a limited time, it could be a scam. Don’t let a con artist try to quickly push you into a decision that you will later regret.
- Steer clear of shady merchants. Whether on the phone or in person, ask merchants if they're PCI compliant. If they don't know or have not even heard of the payment card data security standard, pay with cash or better yet, find what you need somewhere else.
Unfortunately, there will always be scammers looking for new ways to cheat your hardworking cardholders out of their money. But you can help protect your cardholders by letting them know how to spot potential fraud and scams that are currently trending. Check the Federal Trade Commission website periodically for more information on potential scams and recommendations for keeping your cardholders safe.
For more information, call us at 866-622-2201.