My Credit Card Was STOLEN- What Do I Do?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Last week, Sony announced it may have lost up to 77 million people’s personal information, including their debit and credit cards.  Confidentiality and information integrity is always important but here are some timely tips: 

What to do if you think your credit or debit card is stolen

(Information provided from the State Department of Financial Institutions)

Consumers have strong protection if unauthorized charges are made on their credit cards. Typically in the U.S., cardholders are protected from unauthorized transactions on their credit card accounts.

  1. Call the issuing bank or credit union right away. Act fast – the sooner you report the loss, the more likely you will limit your liability if someone uses your card without your permission. Once reported, you are not liable for any further charges on the account.
  2. Follow up in writing. Send your bank or credit union a letter to document that your credit card has been lost or stolen.
  3. Review your monthly bills carefully and report unauthorized use. Keep an eye on your statements for unauthorized charges.
  4. Routinely check your credit report. Although you won't be liable for reported fraudulent charges on your credit card, there could be a chance of risk to your credit record.
    To order a current copy of your credit report:
    • Equifax
      Phone: 1.800.685.1111
    • Experian
      Phone: 1.888.EXPERIAN
    • TransUnion
      Phone: 1.800.916.8800

What everyone can learn from this

Thieves are taking extraordinary steps to get personal and confidential information.  At TMC, we recommend everyone plan ahead, as the old adage goes "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"

  1. If you have a credit or debit card – store the customer service telephone number and account number in a safe place in your home.  That way if you lose your purse or wallet, you have a single location that you can go back to quickly to gather the information and notify your financial institution about the loss.
  2. If you a business – review the PCI DSS standards.  Are you complaint with all the steps?  Have you reviewed the rules with all your employees?  Businesses are held fiscally responsible when card breaches are linked to the improper storage or use and the fines are so heavy that some businesses do not make it through a breach- compliance has never been more important! 

Please call TMC if you have any questions regarding PCI DSS compliance.  We have the relationships with real experts to guide you and your business through the mine field of fraud prevention. 


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