Wise Up Against Credit Card Fraud

By | January 17, 2013

Laptop safe, view topAccording to a new survey, Australia ranks eighth out of 17 nations for incidences of credit card fraud, and a third of Aussies have been hit by credit card fraud. The survey also found that Aussies are more content with the customer service they receive, compared to cardholders in Singapore, China, India and Indonesia. A mere 3% had opted to change to a different provider after they had been cheated on their credit card.

Analysts have put Australian responses down to either a highly forgiving nature or a lack of belief that they deserved better treatment and protection from credit card companies. On the flip side the report revealed that 45% of Indonesians had switched providers after being wangled, even though credit card fraud there happens on a much smaller scale. Prevalence of credit card is higher than South Africa and Indonesia, where it affected 25% and 18% of respondents respectively.

Our research at Bankwest indicates that, even in spite of weariness to access loans via plastic fantastic, the banks are still competing heavily on the market. Even though credit card is so prevalent down under, a mere 6% of cardholders said they would think about using different methods of payment for their purchases after being scammed on their credit cards. Even more surprising is that only 14% of survey participants admitted their dissatisfaction with their credit card company. By contrast, more than half of credit card account holders in Asian countries like China, India, Indonesia and Singapore voiced their dissatisfaction in the survey.

The survey was conducted online between July and August 2012 and took 5200 consumer opinions into account.

The news is interesting in light of warnings issued by the Australian federal Police during National Identity Fraud Awareness Week. Personal fraud is reported to have totalled $1.4-billion for the 2010-2011 financial year and incorporates scams, identity theft and credit card fraud.

Credit card fraud has recently made local headlines after a number of high profile cases were highlighted on news platforms. Some fraud cases were blatantly extravagant while others saw cyber criminals syphoning small amounts of cash off millions of accounts, and going undetected for long enough to virtually get away with it.

The AFP has used the opportunity to increase public awareness and caution locals to take care of the personal information they choose to share over the internet. Some of the logical management measures for protecting yourself against personal fraud include simple techniques such as checking financial accounts on a regular basis and having credit reports carried out. To overcome the problem with identity theft and credit card fraud, account holders are urged to report any suspicious activity to the police. Internet users are also reminded that any personal information shared in an online space can be stored and accessed for many years, leaving them vulnerable for extended periods, and to think twice before sharing details of a personal nature, especially account details and PIN numbers.

Consumers are also urged to pay careful attention to the level of security they enforce on their financial accounts, to change passwords regularly and to log out of bank accounts when using internet banking. While the internet has brought with it a number of innovations, it has also made some account holders more susceptible to the dangers of online fraud. In light of National Identity Fraud Awareness Week consumers are also reminded not to respond to emails or text messages telling them they have won prizes or cash and never to click any links in emails that appear to be sent from financial institutions.

Despite the reflections of the survey consumers are also reminded that they have rights and that any unusual account activity needs to be taken up with the relevant banking institution and reported to the federal police.