How to keep your debit card transactions safe

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    Here are some rules for keeping your debit card safe, according to www.investopedia.com.

    Check your bank statements often

    Since time is of the essence to receive full fraud protection from your bank, make it a habit of reviewing your bank account online at least once a week, or even daily.

    Protect your PIN

    Don’t give your PIN to anyone who asks and don’t write it down anywhere in your purse or wallet. Don’t use your PIN at the filling station: use your card in the credit purchase function to avoid someone seeing it. In fact, using your debit card in credit card mode may offer you extra liability protection, depending on your bank.

    Avoid using debit card online

    Some consumers choose to only use credit cards online since a fraudulent credit card transaction will take more time and can become an item of dispute rather than an instant removal of cash from your checking account.

    Only use ATMs at a bank

    The ATMs located in convenience stores, subway stations, airports and other places have a greater risk of having a skimming device attached by a thief, which could store your debit card data. This sometimes happens at banks, too, but it is easier to do in a place without surveillance cameras.

    Don’t use public wireless access for financial transactions

    Make sure you are using password protected wireless signal to check your bank account balance, pay bills and to shop so that hackers have little or no chance to capture your password and account information.

    Report problems immediately

    While you would certainly report it right away if your wallet was stolen and your credit and debit cards are missing, you should also report any unauthorised transactions immediately, too. The faster you report a problem, the quicker you can cancel your debit card and prevent additional charges.

    Consider filing a police report

    If your debit card is stolen, you may want to contact the police so that you have extra support when you want your bank to reimburse the charges.

    Create your own security profile

    As long as you remember the answers, you can make up anything you want for your security questions. Using a pet’s name or your mother’s maiden name makes it too easy for cons to get into your account. The answers just have to be consistent, and not necessarily truthful.

    The bottom line

    While you may find using a debit card to be a great convenience, it won’t be so convenient if someone manages to drain your current account. A little bit of vigilance and some new habits on your part can go a long way to prevent a damaging debit card experience.

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