The holiday season is right around the corner and shoppers are crowding malls and discount stores to buy the latest gadgets and find the best deals. But what shoppers are neglecting is their safety.
This time of year attracts more shopping-related criminal activity because of the larger crowds and the extended store hours. These factors and the usual distraction of shopping, creates a more favorable environment for petty thieves and other offenders.
Credit Card Fraud:
- Keep a close watch on your credit card every time you use it, and make sure you get it back as quickly as possible.
- Never write your PIN number on your credit card.
- Never leave your credit cards or receipts lying around.
- Shield your credit card number so that others around you can’t copy it or capture it on a mobile telephone or other camera.
- Only carry credit cards that you absolutely need.
- Shred anything with your credit card number written on it.
- If you’re planning to purchase online, make sure the web page where you enter your credit card information is secure through SSL (Secure Socket Layer). You can tell if the web page is secure by looking for the gold lock or key icon at the bottom corner of your browser window.
- If you’re not comfortable submitting your information through the internet, call the seller and give them your information over the telephone. Never send your credit card information via email.
- Check the company out. Only do business with companies that provide a physical address and telephone number.
- Keep good records. Always print out a copy of any online products or services you purchase.
In light of these problems, we warn shoppers to be careful so that they don’t become the victim of criminal activity. Unfortunately, when shopping, people have a tendency to let their guard down. However, paying attention and taking precautions can help eliminate their chances of being victimized.