Stolen Credit Card? 5 Steps You Need to Take Right Away
Falling victim to any kind of theft can be an unnerving experience, no matter the circumstance. But credit card theft is all-the-more unsettling as not only could you be robbed of your money, but your identity too.
Handling the fallout after credit card theft may be a frustrating and time-consuming experience. But, it's 100% necessary to protect yourself and your assets while you still have a chance.
Here are the most important steps to take when it comes to a stolen credit card...
Necessary Steps to Take with a Stolen Credit Card
Whether your purse is stolen from right under your nose or you're a victim of online credit card fraud, there are steps to take before any real damage is done:
Step One: Contact Your Creditor Right Away
As soon as you realize your credit card has been stolen, the most important thing to do is report the theft to your credit card issuer.
Naturally, the first place you may think to look for a contact number is the back of your credit card. But if this isn't possible, check your credit card statement or visit the issuing bank's website. You may even be able to report a stolen card via the website, too.
What's important to remember is that you're actually protected by federal law when with regards to unauthorized charges on your card. Generally, the most you can expect to pay is $50. However, it's still important to act fast and report the theft before fraudulent transactions begin appearing on your card.
Step Two: File a Police Report
Your next step is to visit your local police department and file a report of the theft.
If your card was physically lifted off you, you must provide specific details of the theft. This includes your location, the stores you visited on the same day, dates, times, and any other fraudulent activity.
You will also need to provide documentation or proof that you contacted your creditors to cancel your credit card.
Step Three: Keep a Close Eye on Credit Card Statements
Keep a close eye on your next credit card statement after you've reported the theft.
Make sure every single fraudulent charge has been identified and handled accordingly, and that no other charges have appeared since.
To be extra safe for future reference, set up an alert with your credit card issuer so that you're notified whenever a charge comes off your account. This way you can keep track of your spending, and any other suspicious transactions.
Step Four: Be Hyper Aware of Identity Theft
By having access to your credit card, a thief has access to your date of birth, social security number, and more. This way they can easily set up new accounts in your name and spend as they please.
To prevent identity theft, place a fraud alert with all the credit bureaus in your area. Basically, this will alert authorities when anyone tries to open a line of credit in your name.
If you notice any unfamiliar transactions coming off your account in the future, you may need to enlist the help of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). They will be able to help you with reversing any damage done in terms of identity theft.
Step Five: Contact Your Insurance If Need Be
Homeowner and renter insurance policies tend to offer insurance in the event of credit card theft. If you've been robbed of copious amounts of money and would like to claim some of it back, your insurance may be able to help.
Otherwise, you may want to consider adding to your insurance policy for the lost or stolen cards.
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If you've recently fallen prey to a stolen credit card and want to keep your belongings safe, check out our luxurious range of anti-theft purses.