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7 steps you can take to prevent credit card fraud in the UK

7 steps you can take to prevent credit card fraud in the UK
Image source: Getty Images.


Credit card fraud in the UK costs victims hundreds of millions of pounds each year. It occurs when your credit card details are stolen by fraudsters to make payments or to sell them on to other criminals.

Let’s explore seven effective ways to avoid being caught out by credit card fraud in the UK.

Seven ways to prevent credit card fraud in the UK

1. Report lost or stolen credit cards

Contact your credit card provider and ensure that your card is cancelled as soon as possible after you realise it is lost or stolen. This will help prevent fraudulent transactions from being made using your credit card.

2. Check your credit card statement regularly

Keeping a close eye on your credit card statement can help prevent credit card fraud. You should aim to check your statement every few days. If you notice any unusual transactions, get in touch with your provider immediately so they can investigate.

3. Don’t share your credit card details

Never respond to calls, messages or emails that you receive out of the blue asking for your credit card details. If the person tries to pressure you into making a payment or handing over personal or financial information, it is likely to be a scam.

4. Check your credit report regularly

Monitoring your credit report regularly can help you spot instances of credit card fraud and applications for products or services made falsely in your name. Ideally, you should check your credit report at least once a month. If you notice any suspicious activity, contact the provider listed and the credit reference agency immediately to rectify the issue.

5. Avoid using public Wi-Fi for payments

Don’t use public Wi-Fi when making payments online, as it tends to be less secure. Criminals can spy on your online activity when you use a public internet connection and may be able to view your credit card details if you make payments.

6. Protect your devices

It’s important to install the latest software and app updates to protect your devices from new threats which could cause you to fall victim to credit card fraud in the UK. Usually, you’ll get a notification on your device to inform you when it needs to be updated. You can also check the device’s security settings to see if it has the most recent security update.

7. Keep your credit card in sight

Never let your credit card out of sight when making payments. This could increase the risk of someone making a copy, or “cloning”, your card to make fraudulent payments.

How to deal with credit card fraud in the UK

If you think you’ve fallen victim to credit card fraud, get in touch with your credit card provider as soon as possible. This will help prevent further fraudulent charges being made using your credit card and could result in the money being reimbursed.

You’ll also need to report the incident to Action Fraud, who investigate incidents of credit card fraud in the UK as well as other types of scam.

It’s vital that you change the passwords and PINs for all of your credit cards and debit cards too. If someone has been able to hack into one account, they may also have details about others as well. Creating new secure passwords will reduce the risk of credit card fraud.

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