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How to keep your credit cards safe online

Emma Connors

Credit card fraud online or by phone, where the card is not physically present, is growing fast as internet shopping takes off.

This is the dark side of online shopping. The amount of fraud that takes place in what credit card companies refer to as a “card not present” environment is increasing. This is a case of hooray for the internet as far as criminals are concerned because they don’t have to be present to commit the crime.

Fraud where the card is not present now accounts for 71 per cent of all fraud on Australian-issued credit, debit and charge cards. More than half takes place overseas, with the strong dollar driving more shoppers to use their credit cards on international sites.

Black market

There is a ready market for stolen credit card details.

The Australian Crime Commission reports prices vary according to country, with Australia often the third or fourth least expensive country after the United States, United Kingdom and sometimes Canada. The average underground price for a credit card ranges from $7 to $35, depending on the amount of credit available.

Credit card customers can take some comfort from the fact they will be reimbursed for losses due to fraud but prevention is better than cure.

You may also wish to read: How to keep your super safe from fraud

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