For many people, debit cards are the perfect plastic. They offer most of the conveniences of credit cards with no risk of accumulating debt. But like credit cards, debit cards are vulnerable to rip-off artists. And debit card fraud is particularly scary because thieves can withdraw money directly from your checking account. Here's how debit fraud happens and how to protect yourself.
How identity thieves operate
Debit card fraud can be sophisticated or old-school. Thieves use techniques including:
Smart ways to protect yourself
Adopt these simple habits to greatly reduce your odds of falling victim to debit card fraud:
Even if you've taken precautions, debit card fraud can still happen. If your card gets hacked, don't panic. Tell your financial right away so you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges, and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.
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