News reports indicate a surge of credit card fraud calls across the country. Scam artists call households, impersonating bank employees who need to collect credit card numbers and other personal information for a variety of reasons, including:
- Verifying a recent charge made on a card. Due to an increase in credit card skimming operations, criminals may actually have some accurate information to use during fraud calls.
- Offering a special perk, like a travel upgrade or a discount coupon book.
- Threatening that a card may be cancelled due to lack of use.
According to law enforcement officials, consumers can protect themselves from credit card fraud by following a few simple tips:
- Banks keep credit card details on file. A legitimate call from your bank will use other information to verify identity.
- Consumers should always call the number printed on the back of credit cards or published on banks' websites, not numbers left in messages.
Identity theft rings have grown more sophisticated in the past few years, forcing consumers to be even more vigilant about their financial security.