The holiday season is upon us, which means there will be a lot of family, friends and holiday cheer. However, this also means there will be a lot of spending on gifts. These gifts will most likely be bought for by credit cards.
Many companies and retailers will be having exclusive deals to ring in the holiday season. This can lead to a lot of impulsive shopping and a lot of unhealthy habits with your credit card spending. To ensure that you and your credit card are in good shape for the holidays, follow these tips.
Be Careful In Physical Stores
If you are looking to do your holiday shopping at a physical store, you need to use your common sense. This is imperative in order to keep your information secure. This means ensuring that your credit card is in a safe place, such as a wallet or a purse. Do not allow your credit card to be left unguarded in your pocket, where it can easily slip out.
Odds are wherever you are shopping for the holidays will be very crowded. This can lead to some would-be thieves taking an opportunity to steal it. You also need to be secure with your information when you are checking out your items as well. There may be some people who will look over the number pad, looking to steal your PIN number.
Ensure That Online Shopping Is Secure
Shopping in a physical store can be a dangerous endeavor if you are not careful with your credit card. However, online shopping can be even more hazardous if you are not shopping on a secure site. Before you enter any site that requires your credit card information, a good rule of thumb is to look at the website address bar.
You need to specifically be looking for the “https://” portion. If there is no “s” here, then this means the information may not be encrypted when the data is transmitted. What this means is that even if the site appears to be legitimate, your card information can potentially be vulnerable.
You must always look at the security of the site that you are shopping on before taking further action. For more information on how you can be more secure with your credit card, you could visit Alamo Associates. They are professionals who prioritize the client and affordable low-interest rates for credit card payments.
Keep Track Of Receipts
Receipts tend to be easily thrown away after purchase. This is not a habit that you will want to indulge in. What you should do is actually stash the receipts in a secure area. The reason why you should do this is that this will allow you to compare receipts to credit card statements. You will also be able to compare online account histories while monitoring potential charges that can compromise your account and credit score.
When purchases are made in a brief period of time, a typical behavior has done around the holiday season; this can provide the opportunity for small, false charges to go unnoticed. Once you spot potential fraud, it should be reported immediately.
Turn On Activity Alerts
Fraud is one of the most common crimes committed during the holidays, often due to lapses in judgment made by the user. If you want an automated defense against this crime, you should be encouraged to sign up for automatic transaction alerts that major credit card issuers make available to the user. Usually, users will be able to adjust the notifications to distribute these alerts when a purchase reaches a certain threshold.
Getting these notifications every time a purchase is made, especially during the holidays, will ensure that the card’s use is being adequately tracked and that they can stay on top of any disputable charges. You may also want to consider to tell your credit card issuer that activity will be larger than usual if you plan to be purchasing in bulk.
Improve Account Passwords
While you may not have absolute control over payment information once you give it to retailers, you can help secure accounts through strong passwords and changing them frequently. If it can be easily guessed, or if you are just copying the same password that you use for other services, then the odds are that it is not a strong password.
The wisdom as to how to go about making a strong one has changed over time. They do not necessarily have to be too complicated, because you will want to memorize it as well. Basically, make sure that your password is long, memorable, and easy to remember. That way, it will only be unique to you. You should also refrain from making your passwords the answer to account security questions.
Try Mobile Wallets
Physical credit cards don’t have to be the only way that you make purchases not involving cash. The holiday season may be an excellent opportunity for you to hop on the bandwagon. Mobile wallet payments can prove to be not only convenient but extra secure because you will have extra layers of security in stores. It has proven to be a secure practice because there is added protection in the form of tokenization and biometrics.
The holiday season can prove to be a troublesome time for credit card safety, and you must follow these tips to protect yourself and your information. If you happen to be facing difficulties in paying off credit card debt, Alamo Associates may be just the resource you need, with their offers of single monthly payments.
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