Having a complicated signature just won’t stop highly evolved thieves anymore.
There is one thing you need to know, and it’s that bad elements of society will always try to outsmart you, outclass you, and outdo you. One wrong credit card swipe—one simple misstep—and your hard-earned money could be theirs for the taking.
Some unscrupulous shops have readers installed in their terminals, which clone the data stored in the magnetic strip of your credit card. With this, they can get your PIN skimmed as you key in your passcode. Once the card data has been copied, hackers will install it on blank cards and use your PIN to max out your account on a whim. And often, they do it at a time you’re most vulnerable: when you are sleeping right in the comforts of your own home.
But the hassles of losing your credit card don’t end there. You also have to file a report. It normally takes weeks for a bank to finish their investigation, come up with results, and get back to you. And most of the time, it doesn’t go in your favor. Because the rules we have here in the Philippines require cardholders to report unauthorized use before the fraudulent transaction.
It’s a good thing that credit card companies are constantly beefing up their security features. There are always new, better features installed in credit cards to protect you from incurring debt you didn’t actually benefit from. It helps to keep yourself updated on these developments too.
1. Contactless payment
Newer credit cards offered by Philippine banks now use contactless payment technology—the same technology used in the recently launched MRT and LRT Beep cards. With radio-frequency identification (RFID) or near-field communication chips embedded in the credit cards, users no longer have to swipe their cards. It greatly reduces the chances of scammers getting into contact with your card. Aside from tap-only payment, some RFID-embedded credit cards also limit the amount that can be paid using contactless payment, limiting the chances of unauthorized use even further.
2. Multi-factor authentication
Having a complicated signature and bad penmanship won’t stop more evolved, tech-savvy thieves from stealing your credit card information. Take it one step further with multi-factor authentication. Upon swiping, you are required to authenticate the purchase within the limited window of time, or else the transaction will be denied. There are many ways multi-factor authentication can be done: via SMS, a smartphone application, or email. Talk to your bank about multi-factor authentication to protect your money better.
3. EMV chip technology
Europay, MasterCard, Visa (EMV) chip technology, the latest global standard in credit card security, offers better protection from fraudsters who clone credit card data. Using a unique code for every transaction, it makes cloning the data nearly impossible as this prevents the use of a previous transaction data for other purchases. This feature isn’t available in the country yet, but given our demands for tighter security, expect that it will be here soon.