Rules for safe card use

Thanks to ongoing advancements in anti-fraud methods within payment systems, there has been a decrease in the volume of fraudulent transactions.

The main obstacle for criminals is the adherence to preventive measures during card storage and usage, as well as the smart protection of personal and financial information by cardholders.

Here are some tips and recommendations for necessary security measures:

  • Write down the card number and phone number of the customer service center — this information can be useful in case of loss or theft of the card. Keep this information in a safe place. If your bank allows you to change your PIN to a new one of your own, avoid obvious, predictable numbers. For example, the ending of your phone number, your date of birth, and so on.

  • Never write down your PIN — remember it. If you decide to record it, make sure that the recording did not get into your wallet. Never write down the PIN code on the card.

  • Never disclose your PIN code to anyone. Remember, you should not and are not obliged to provide it to anyone, including bank representatives, law enforcement authorities, or cashiers at retail stores. Only the cardholder should know the PIN code.

  • Report a lost or stolen card to your bank immediately. In some cases, you may need to write a police report or provide written confirmation of the loss of the card. 

When using the card:

  • Take care of your plastic cards just like you would with cash. Don't forget them in the car, at a bar, in a nightclub, or at the beach.

  • If possible, try to always keep an eye on your card during a transaction.

  • Make sure you receive your own card back after making a payment.

  • Before signing a receipt that confirms a purchase with your card, always verify it first, paying attention to the stated purchase amount paid with the card. Keep copies of receipts and transaction slips that confirm payment transactions and cash withdrawals from ATMs.

  • Always check your account statement (especially after a trip). Compare the amounts of purchases paid for with the card against the receipts you have. Check your statement for any unknown transactions not made by you.

  • Never disclose the number of your credit card over the phone to any individuals or companies. You should only provide card information if you are confident that you are dealing with a reputable and trusted company.

  • If you feel pressured by a sales representative over the phone, be prepared. Do not provide your plastic card number until you have made a final decision to make a purchase.

  • When paying for a purchase in a store, avoid offering additional personal information. All that is needed is the document that identifies you.

  • You should be aware of who has access to your cards. If someone in your family, such as your spouse, children, or parents, uses your card (whether you were notified or not), you are responsible for the purchases or cash withdrawals made with it. 

Your card and PIN code:

  • Keep your debit and credit cards in a secure place and prevent any damage (scratches, chips, etc.).

  • Never write down your PIN code - remember it. If you decide to write it down, make sure the record does not end up in your wallet. Never write the PIN code on the card itself.

  • If your bank allows you to change your PIN to a new one of your own, avoid obvious, predictable numbers. For example, the ending of your phone number, your date of birth, and so on.

  • Always have the emergency contact number of the bank that issued your card on hand, and in case of its loss, contact the bank immediately.

Protection of personal and financial information

In some countries, the theft of personal data of individuals has become more frequent. Criminals carry out scams using surnames and names, as well as financial information that has become available to them. In many countries, such actions are criminally punishable. Many people have become victims of such fraud. Now their personal data can be used by fraudsters for many years.

To some extent, one cannot fully protect oneself.  But not allowing criminals to obtain your information is possible if you take these recommendations seriously:

  • Do not "spread" information that can be used to prove your identity (passport number, driver's license, etc.) — this information is valuable to thieves.

  • Do not give numbers of plastic cards and bank accounts to sellers of goods and services who call you by phone.

  • Make sure that both the card and the check are returned to you after the transaction is complete.

  • Shred all financial documents you want to get rid of, including shopping receipts, ATM receipts, bank statements, and even a letter of credit from your bank.

  • Lock all your financial documents at home.

  • Check your credit card statements to make sure that all transactions shown on them were made by you.

  • If you have not received your statement (credit card bill) for the past month, contact your bank immediately to see if it has been sent. And if so, to what address.

  • Do not carry unnecessary credit cards, ID cards, birth certificates.

Protection of personal information on the Internet

With the help of new technologies and the Internet, it is becoming increasingly easy to collect and share data about individuals. Most of all, it really benefits everyone. For example, on the Internet we easily and quickly select only the information that interests us. This exchange of data makes life easier for us, saves time and money.

But each of us is obliged to do everything possible to prevent others from using our personal information.

When visiting websites, you should know and understand what information is being collected about you. You can read about this in the section of the website where its owner is required to publish the rules of the website with personal information (Private Policy Statement). Why do you need such sections on websites and why should you get to know them?

How to find the section on the rules for working with personal information (Privacy Policy) on the website. These sections must be made accessible and easy to read. Usually the link to the page of this section is located on the main page at the bottom or in the "Customer Support" section. Find the link and click on it. On English-language information websites, these sections are usually labeled Privacy or Information Practices.

Basic principles of honest work with personal information

Depending on the specific purpose of your visit to this or that website, you may or may not provide information about yourself to the website owner. It is important to understand how this information will be used later. By reviewing the rules (privacy policy) regarding the handling of personal information on this website, you make a decision on how you prefer to disclose information about yourself.

A fair policy for the collection and use of personal data can usually be assessed by the following criteria:

  • Informing. The rules for handling personal information clearly and explicitly inform the website user about what information is being collected (and how it will be used later).

  • Choice. Visitors can choose how the collected information will be used, especially if the website owners plan to transfer it to third parties (for example, selling databases of e-mail addresses, etc.). The website has procedures by which the visitor is openly offered to accept or cancel participation in one or another scheme of transfer, distribution of the provided information.

  • Access. Website visitors have the opportunity to review and update information about themselves to ensure the relevance and correctness of the data.

  • Security. The website implements all necessary measures to protect the information collected from unauthorized access or modification.

Sometimes on websites you can see a (so-called) certificate of compliance with the rules for working with personal information (Privacy Seal). This certificate indicates the compliance of this website with the generally recognized rules of a well-known company specializing in the protection of personal information, to which visitors can turn for the resolution of any disputes that have arisen with the owners of the website.

Tips for protecting personal data:

  • Read the rules for working with personal information published on this website. Find out what information about you is collected, how it is done, and how it will be used in the future.

  • If you do not find the published rules, ask the webmaster to send them by email or ask him to publish them on the website.

  • Before participating in various surveys, prize draws, or games that require you to provide personal information, read the website's privacy policy and the rules of the specific activity. These resources should provide you with information on how the provided information will be used.

  • Make sure that the website offers you the option to both accept and withdraw your consent to participate.