I recently wrote about some benefits gained by using credit cards instead of using cash during Christmas shopping. One additional caveat to take into consideration is exactly how safe using your plastic instead of cash is.
Many consumers, especially seniors are skeptical or flat out afraid to provide any sort of credit card information online. After all, they can’t see with their own eyes who’s handling their sensitive information and what they may be doing with it. I personally shop online often and have no problem providing my payment information. I do however limit my shopping to secure, trusted sites. I understand how some consumers have reservations about paying online. These very consumers feel more comfortable handing their plastic to a human standing right in front of them where they can keep their eye on them, what can be safer than this?
Regardless of the precautions, you take to secure your personal information, security breaches still occur. Target just announced that upwards of 40 million consumers credit card information has been compromised. Anyone shopping at Target from November 27, 2013, thru December 15, 2013, may fall victim. The information breached included consumers names, card numbers, expiration numbers, and the three-digit CVV security codes on both credit cards and debit cards. If you shopped at Target during this time frame, be sure to check your bank accounts and credit card activity. Be sure to notify your bank or creditor if you notice any unauthorized charges.
Bottom line, no matter how many precautions you take to protect your personal data, you better have your own safeguards in place. Keep a close eye on your bank statements and credit card statements. Check your credit annually for free at www.annualcreditreport.com and look for any irregular accounts or personal data errors.