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Fraud Prevention Tips

Information that will help you with safer online transactions.

Credit Card fraud 

  1. Keep an eye on your credit card every time you use it, and make sure you get it back as quickly as possible.
  2. Dont give out your account number over the phone unless you initiate the call and you know the company is reputable. Never give your credit card info out when you receive a phone call.
  3. Only carry around credit cards that you absolutely need. Dont carry around extra credit cards that you rarely use.
  4. Never lend a credit card to anyone else.

    If you move, notify your credit card issuers in advance of your change of address. 

Prevention of Phone Fraud 

  1. Many thieves use the telephone to commit fraud. These criminals are looking for unsuspecting individuals who will give them important information, like Social Security Numbers, Date of birth, Credit card numbers or Bank account numbers.
  2. Never give company account numbers or credit information to anyone you dont know.
  3. Instruct employees to avoid giving confidential company information to anyone outside of the business. 

Computer Fraud 

  1. Never send personal or sensitive business information via unsecured email. Any information sent through unsecured email messages may be intercepted and stolen.
  2. Always check that emails you have received do not contain viruses by running your anti-virus software when the email attachment is received. 
  3. Do not provide confidential personal or banking information to anyone in an email. 

Mail fraud 

  1. If merchandise you didnt order arrives COD (Cash On Delivery), just send it back.
  2. If you are asked to send a "deposit" to "get started" with a work-at-home offer or a pyramid scheme, dont respond.
  3. Collect zip codes of mailed packages that do not make their destination. Then, contact the postmaster of that area. 
  4. Dont have your Social Security number printed on checks. Use an alternate number if needed. 

General Advice 

  1. Dont send out any products until they are paid for.
  2. If you are selling on commission, be certain to have an inventory and a contract.
  3. Be cautious of large orders with requests to ship next day. These may be real, but most people watch their money.
  4. Make sure no-one but you and your mailman has access to your mail box. Be sure it is securely locked or located where others cant get into it. 

Protect Yourself against Check Fraud 

  1. Dont give your checking account number or the numbers at the bottom of your checks to people you don’t know.
  2. Never give out your checking account number over the telephone or the Internet unless you agree to pay for something, and suspect fraud if a telemarketer says a checking account number is needed. 
  3. Reveal checking account information only to businesses you know to be reputable.

Beware of your surroundings 

  1. When using your secret codes to access cash at ATMs or using your debit card at stores where you have to enter a PIN Number, beware of your surroundings and the eyes looking over your shoulders. 
  2. Cover your hand when typing the secret code. 
  3. Don’t be embarrassed as we all might get sometimes when we try hard to be secretive. It’s better to be safe than sorry. 

Know who youre dealing with This is the most important. 

  1. Do your homework on the familiar or non-familiar individual, company or charity to ensure that they are legitimate.
  2. Check out other web sites regarding this person/company by using search engine like google or yahoo.
  3. Some Web sites have feedback forums, which can provide useful information about other peoples experiences with particular sellers. Send them e-mail to see if they have an active e-mail address. 

Secure and Trusted site 

  1. Dont give out your credit card number(s) online unless the site is a secure and trusted site.
  2. Sometimes a tiny icon of a padlock appears to symbolize a higher level of security to transmit data. 

Look for information about how complaints are handled 

  1. It can be difficult to resolve complaints, especially if the seller or charity is located in another country.
  2. Look on the Web site for information about programs the company or organization participates in that require it to meet standards for reliability and help to handle disputes. 

Guard your personal information 

  1. Dont provide your credit card or bank account number unless you are actually paying for something.
  2. Your social security number should not be necessary unless you are applying for credit.
  3. Be especially suspicious if someone claiming to be from a company with whom you have an account asks for information that the business already has. 

Beware of dangerous downloads 

  1. In downloading programs to see pictures, hear music, play games, etc., you could download a virus that wipes out your computer files or connects your modem to a foreign telephone number, resulting in expensive phone charges.
  2. Only download programs from Web sites you know and trust. Read all user agreements carefully. 

Pay the safest way 

  1. Credit cards are the safest way to pay for online purchases because you can dispute the charges if you never get the goods or services or the offer was misrepresented.
  2. There are new technologies, such as "substitute" credit card numbers and password programs, which can offer extra measures of protection from someone else using your credit card.
     
     
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