Avoid scams this Christmas

November 25, 2014

Christmas can be a hectic time of year so to help prevent any additional stress we have some tips on how you can avoid scams this Christmas:

Be careful when using your credit and debit cards

  • If you’re using an ATM machine and you notice something unusual about the cash machine, or if there are signs of tampering, do not enter your card or PIN. Report your suspicions to the bank concerned immediately.
  • When taking money out stand close to the ATM or card terminal and always shield the keypad with your free hand and your body to avoid anyone seeing you enter your PIN.
  • Try not to take out large amounts of cash as you don’t want to be carrying it around while shopping and it can leave you vulnerable to theft.
  • Don’t forget to take your card or money from the ATM. This does happen more frequently than you think, particularly when you are under pressure and there are crowds of people around.

Protect your cards from online scams

  • Most major credit card companies now have secure online systems to give you additional protection.  This means that, before your transaction goes through, you may be asked for an additional password. If you are shopping online, you should look for sites that have this extra layer of security. Talk to your debit/credit card providers about what extra security they provide.
  • Try to shop from trusted and well-known websites. If unsure, do some research, for instance look for positive/negative reviews of the site from friends, family or on online forums.

Follow up with your bank if you have any concerns

  • If you use online banking, check your transactions every few days or check your credit card and bank statements as soon as they arrive. Contact your bank or card provider if you notice anything you are not sure of.
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