In the aftermath of the massive holiday data breach that effected Target and a number of other major retailers, consumers are now faced with yet another reason to be concerned about the safety of their credit cards.
Reports are surfacing that consumers are finding unauthorized charges of $9.84 on their statements. The business that levied the charge claims that the fee is for "customer support" and it may appear on the statement as one of many different websites. It appears their plan is fly under the radar when they hit individual accounts.
"These individuals are banking on the fact that there is a good chance consumers are not going to notice these small charges." said Karen Nalven, president of the Better Business Bureau serving West Florida, in a prepared statement.
"This small charge scam has been around for many years. It is important consumers take their time and review all credit card statements thoroughly," Nalven said.
Victims of this fraud report that, when they've accessed the website listed on their statement, they were given a customer support phone number and email address. After calling the number, they were told that the charge would be removed.
However, the only way that consumers can be certain that they have taken positive steps to protect themselves is to contact their card issuer regarding the suspected fraud and follow their recommendations.
Reduce Your Risk of Credit Card Fraud:
* Report lost cards and incorrect charges promptly. In the United States and Canada if your credit card is lost, stolen, or used without your permission, you may be responsible for up to $50. If you report the loss before the card is used, you're not responsible for any unauthorized charges. In addition, many cardholders are protected by zero liability policies set in place by credit card companies.
* Request a new card if you notice unauthorized charges. Fraudulent charges mean your card information has been compromised. Be on the safe side and request a new card.
* Never lend your card. And don't leave your cards, statements and receipts laying around your home, car or office.
* Never sign a blank charge slip. Draw lines through blank spaces on charge slips above the total so the amount can't be changed.
* Use caution when ordering online or over the phone. Always be cautious about disclosing your account number on the telephone or online unless you know the person you're dealing with represents a reputable company.
Source: Better Business Bureau