Students are just like anyone else – they too can fall victim to money thieves. Not so long ago it was only the money in a student’s pocket that was at risk, but today’s fraudsters now target student bank accounts. Scholarships, money transfers from parents, wages from student jobs – all this involves the use of a bank card. So, here are some tips on how to protect yourself from thieves targeting your bank card.
• Keep your bank card details to yourself. Just knowing your bank card information is enough to steal money from your account. So, don’t ask anyone to make payments for you using your card – i.e., don’t tell them your card number or verification code.
• Keep your CVV verification code a secret. Fraudsters may secretly photograph your bank card when you are making purchases in a store or withdrawing cash from an ATM. It may not happen on purpose, but your CVV could end up being snapped by a camera that is anything but friendly. What can you do? On some cards you can erase the CVV code. Or cover it with something so that nobody can see it. Of course, spoiling a credit card is not ideal, but this method will work if you want to protect your card from criminals.
• And while we’re on the subject of cameras… Be sure your bank card does not appear in any of your photos, especially those you post on social networking sites. That could turn out to be an epic fail.
• Keep your card in a safe place. This piece of plastic should be treated with care. Get into the habit of carefully putting it back in your wallet after using it. This will reduce the chances of you losing the actual card. It is not a good idea to keep a credit card near equipment or devices that emit strong electrical or magnetic fields, as this may wipe the data from the card.
• Cheat the thief. Misleading a thief is a pretty easy way to protect your credit card. Simply place a piece of paper with three different (fake!) PIN codes in an apparently “secret” pocket in your wallet. If three incorrect codes are entered at an ATM, the card will be blocked and the victim will only have to visit their bank to apply for a new card.
• Always keep your bank phone number to hand. Save it in the address book of your phone, smartphone or tablet. This will allow you to quickly block the card if it is lost or stolen and cancel any transactions made without your authorization.
• Set up two-factor authentication. It will take a little longer to make e-payments, but it prevents unauthorized money withdrawals or payments from your card. You will always be aware that someone is trying to use your account via the Internet.
• Check the ATM for illegal devices. So-called skimmers can read information about your card when you are using the ATM. Therefore, always check to see if there is something suspicious on the ATM. This may be a suspiciously new keyboard or a micro camera hidden somewhere near the keyboard/card reader cover. Always pay attention to such things.
• When making e-payments, ensure the connection is established via HTTPS. One of the most secure ways to make payments is to the use the Safe Banking functionality integrated in Kaspersky Internet Security – Multi-Device. The program knows all the main bank addresses and automatically launches the protection mechanism which prevents fraudsters from intercepting your data.