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3 Trends in Credit Card Fraud

Posted on 21 November, 2016

As a company with a high-risk merchant account, you need to stay aware of new types of credit card fraud so you can take action to protect your business. Keep reading to learn about three emerging trends in this type of crime.

Hackers Are Rushing to Use Magnetic Strip Data

The United States is one of many nations that is moving away from credit and debit cards with magnetic strips and embracing chip-and-PIN technology to reduce fraud. Those cards require the customer to put a card into a special reader and then enter a PIN when prompted.

Analysts believe these new cards will make it more difficult to complete fraudulent purchases. As a result of these changes, there has been a recent increase in fraud related to magnetic strip cards; hackers want to hurry and make use of stolen data before it’s obsolete.¬† Experts believe this type of hacking will be most prevalent in the few years after countries change over from magnetic strip cards to chip-and-PIN varieties.

Gamers Are Facing Charges for Games They Didn’t Buy

There are numerous online accounts of people who were charged for games they never purchased, all because hackers accessed their Playstation accounts. Reportedly, a part of a user’s payment information is visible from their Playstation account after login. Generally, the amounts charged represent game credits of $100 or less, and sometimes the charges are for recurring payments.

Some creative hackers have been able to use the information they see on the accounts, then pose as the genuine users when speaking to Playstation’s tech support team. As a result, authentic users have gotten locked out of their accounts. Even after disputing the charges with payment providers, Playstation has sometimes prevented victims from accessing their accounts, frustrating¬†loyal customers.

Self-Checkout Stations Are Now Targets

Credit card skimming is a hacking trick that involves adding a small device to an existing credit card swipe machine. The device captures data from the credit card and transfers it to the hackers. Skimmer devices are already frequently added to ATMs, but now self-checkouts at retail stores are becoming common targets.

Because self-checkout stations aren’t supervised as heavily as the stations with regular cashiers, it’s easier for hackers to add skimmers to them. This is especially true during low-traffic periods at stores that are open 24 hours. Once hackers have credit card data, they can use it to buy whatever they want. The only way to eventually stop them is if a person notices strange charges on their account and alerts the bank.

Fraud specialists believe incidences of this kind will decrease as the new chip-and-PIN cards become more common. It won’t be enough for hackers to just have your card number; they’ll also need to know your PIN. Experts recommend that customers cover the keypad with one hand when entering a PIN because some hackers have tiny cameras that watch and record the numbers.

Knowledge is the best defense against fraud. Keep these emerging trends in mind to safeguard your business.


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Bad credit merchant account credit card processing services

Accept all major credit cards

Regardless of Credit History!