Debit & Credit Card Fraud
Your PIN is the key. Protect it.
We all rely on our plastic – be it debit card or credit card – to manage our everyday banking. It’s an essential service for most Canadians, as we continue to move away from cash. Your vigilance can help keep them safe.
Your credit or debit card can be compromised in a number of ways. Here are a few to watch out for:
- Shoulder surfing and card switching. You may accidentally reveal your PIN number to someone you know or else it is noted by someone observing you using it. Your card may be lost or stolen, then used by a third party to purchase goods or withdraw cash. Or it may be intercepted in transit while being mailed to you.
- Low tech skimming. Dishonest merchants make unauthorized duplicate transactions on your debit card – they swipe your card on a legitimate terminal and then a second time on an a 'reader' device which captures your electronic data, then either a camera or someone standing behind you records your PIN. ATM machines may also be connected to a card reader with a hidden camera or other device to capture your PIN.
- High tech skimming. Criminals alter or steal a legitimate PIN pad from a merchant and replace it with their compromised PIN pad. Debit card information and PIN numbers are then transferred to a remote computer using Bluetooth technology. In some cases the terminal may be rigged without the merchant's knowledge.
Chip cards – a new level of protection.
Chip-enabled credit and debit cards have an embedded microchip that stores information in a secure, encrypted format, making it more difficult for unauthorized users to copy or access the information on the card. When used with chip-enabled ATMs and point-of-sale devices, they offer a higher level of security for credit card and debit card transactions.
What to do if you suspect debit or credit card fraud.
If you suspect either your BlueShore Financial debit or credit card has been compromised, contact us immediately to report the incident. You may be held liable for funds removed from your account up to the daily limit – up to the time you tell us there's a problem. So it's in your best interest to contact us if your card is lost or stolen, or if you suspect that someone else might know your PIN. Once we've been advised, you aren't liable for any money removed from your account without your permission.
The good news – no liability in most cases.
You're not liable for losses resulting from circumstances beyond your control, such as technical problems, our errors or other system malfunctions or unauthorized use of a card/PIN where we were responsible for preventing it. We become responsible once your card has been reported lost or stolen, when it has been cancelled or has expired or after you've reported that your PIN may be known to others. For more information, check the Canadian Code of Practice for Consumer Debit Card Services.
How to protect your credit/debit Card.
Whether you're on the road or in the comfort of your home, it's important to always protect your BlueShore Financial Access Card. While this handy card may be the ultimate in convenience, it must be used and protected properly. These basic tips will help you do just that.
- Keep track of when new and reissued cards should arrive and call the issuer if they don't come on time.
- Always sign your card in ink as soon as you receive it.
- Memorize your PIN – it's your electronic signature. If your PIN is safe, your card is safe.
- Don't use the same PIN for all your cards, and don't choose your birth date or other easily identifiable number that might be on something else in your wallet.
- Be PIN smart. Always shield your PIN when entering it in a machine. Never disclose it to anyone.
- Remember to take your bank card and your receipt after completing an ATM transaction.
- Always conduct transactions with your bank card when and where you feel most secure. If you are uncomfortable, do not use it.
- Never give your card number to anyone – strangers or telemarketers who call you on the phone. Don't give your card number unless you initiated the call.
- Never lend your card to anyone, including friends and family. Do not let your credit card out of your sight at anytime – for example, at a restaurant, don't let it out of your sight.
- Tear up all credit card receipts and pre-approved credit card offers into small pieces before you throw them away. Keep your billing statements in a safe place.
- Make sure you're using a secure website when you use your credit card online, Look for a small key or lock symbol at the bottom right of your browser's window.
- Always check your statements and call your credit card issuer immediately if you see anything suspicious on your bill. You could help the company uncover fraud-and save yourself from paying unauthorized charges.
- Keep on top of credit reports. You can access your credit report from a credit reporting agency Like Equifax or Trans Union. We recommend checking it once a year.
- Make sure your mailbox is secure and that only you and the postal carrier have access to it.
- Notify us immediately if your card is lost, stolen or retained by an ATM.
- Be just as vigilant when traveling. Card fraud isn't limited to Canada only – it's international. Check out more tips to consider when travelling.