Friday, December 19, 2008

Protect Your Credit Card From the Latest Identity Theft Techniques

Most credit card users are aware that they need to be wary of identity thieves who would like nothing better than to gain the card number from an unsuspecting consumer. So while consumers should continue to be wary about giving out their credit card information in person, by phone, or over the Internet to anyone who they don't know, there are some other things to also look out for.

Many sandwich shops offer coupons for a free sub. Some thieves have taken to buying up a number of these coupons, and then picking up a similar number of credit card applications. These criminals will go to a shopping mall or other highly-trafficked area and ask people to sign up for a credit card to get a free sandwich. Once the person has filled out the application, the thief has all their personal information, including a social security number. To an identity thief, this information is much more valuable than the cost of a hoagie.

To avoid becoming a victim of this scam, consumers can apply for credit cards online at secure Websites like

Another way identity thieves are getting at credit card information is through the use of that popular piece of technology, the camera phone. As the cardholder goes to use their plastic at an ATM or somewhere else the card number is publicly visible, the nearby thief snaps a photo.

Cardholders using an ATM or taking their credit card out in public should notice if anyone nearby has a camera phone at the ready or appears to be getting a look at the card number. Consumers should try and keep the actual card number obscured by their hand when they take it out from a wallet.

Make an identity thief's life tougher by always thinking about ways to protect your credit card information and taking the necessary precautions.

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