Credit Card Scams Warning
|Learn about the "fine print" on
your credit card statements and your rights when your credit cards
and debit cards are stolen.
This site is all about educating consumers on credit cards. Here you'll learn about the hidden costs buried in credit card disclosure statements, which credit laws protect you against credit card scams and rip-offs, debit card rules, why credit card insurance is useless and how and where to file complaints about credit card bills and charges.
Many credit card companies
offer initial "teaser" rates as low as zero percent but . . .
WARNING!! - WARNING!! - WARNING!!
Credit Card Scams are all over the place! They usually start with a call from someone claiming to be from "VISA" or "MasterCard"! Here is how the scam unfolds...
The caller claims to be from the Security and Fraud department at VISA (or Mastercard) and he or she gives you a bogus identification badge number and says your card has been flagged for an unusual purchase pattern. The caller goes on to say he just needs to verify a recent purchase. He asks, "did you purchase a [describes item] for [gives dollar amount] from a company based in (names a state)?
Obviously, you have not made any such purchase and when you say "No" the caller continues with, "then we will issue a credit to your account. The caller tells you, "We've been watching this company and most charges range from $297 to $497, just under the $500 purchase pattern that flags most cards. Before your next statement, the credit will be sent to (gives your address), is that correct?" Of course you say "Yes" and now the scam really heats up as the caller draws you deeper into this credit card scam.
The callers says, "I am initiating a fraud investigation and if you have any questions, you should call the 800 number listed on your card 1-800-VISA and ask for Security. You will need to refer to this Control number [provides bogus 6 digit number] and asks, "Do you need me to read it again?"
WARNING! Every bit of the above conversation is designed to trick you into revealing your 3-digit security code. The caller establishes himself as credible in your mind and you actually start believing he is from your credit card company. NEVER GIVE YOUR INFORMATION TO ANYONE WHO CALLS YOU! HANG UP AND CALL THE COMPANY YOURSELF!!!
If the caller was successful in convincing you he was for real, you now believe he is really from the Security and Fraud department. He'll ask you to verify you are in possession of your card by saying, "Please look at the back of your card. Do you see seven small numbers?"
Of course you'll answer yes and then the caller continues the scam, "The first four numbers are your card number, the next 3 are the security numbers that verify you are in possession of the card. These are the numbers you use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. Please read me the three numbers." The caller then says, "That is correct. I just needed to verify that the card has not been lost or stolen, and that you still have your card. Do you have any other questions?" The caller ends the call on a pleasant note telling you not to hesitate to call back if you have any questions.
At this point you've just been scammed and within minutes of hanging up the phone, the scam artist uses your credit card number and 3-digit security code (PIN) to make purchases. I called the Security and Fraud department for Visa and Mastercard, they confirmed this scam and said they receive several of these reports daily. They also said to remind people that they NEVER ask for any information from your credit card because they already have that information.
To add injury to insult, the caller promised you a credit so you wait until your statement arrives to verify this fact. It's only when you get your statement and see charges you don't recognize that you realize you've been scammed! To complicate matters, it's harder to file a fraud report because so much time has passed since the scam occurred. Nevertheless, call Visa or Mastercard immediately and file a fraud report and also file a police report, (follow your credit card company's instructions to the letter!)