Sunday, 17 November 2013

Bank Card Protection Features: Debit and Credit Cards

Both credit cards and debit cards offer several layers of security to protect customers from fraud and wrongful use. If you are someone who likes the convenience of making cashless transactions using a credit or a debit card, it is best to be aware of card security features so you are able to make the most out of your card.

Zero liability

Zero liability protection does not hold the cardholder responsible for unauthorised purchases – both offline and online – made using a credit or debit card. Now a basic feature for almost any credit or debit card, the issuer reimburses stolen funds to the cardholder. There are usually limits to coverage and customers must immediately report any questionable items on their statement within a limited amount of days.

3-Digit Security Code

Usually found at the back of the card, this is a security feature that confirms to the merchant that the card being used for a transaction is in the customer’s physical possesion.

Unique Personal Codes

Major providers have enabled an added layer of security feature for credit cards, wherein customers will be asked by any participating merchant for a unique code during the checkout process. The unique password or code will be known only by the card issuer and the customer.

Virtual account numbers

This identity theft protection feature, available for both debit and credit cards, allows users to generate a temporary card number that could only be used for one transaction. This is especially useful if you want to hide your real credit or debit card number when shopping online.

Identity theft insurance

An optional security feature for credit cards, insurance against identity theft would usually cost the customer a little extra. Coverage typically includes legal fees, lost wages, telephone bills, and other expenses/income loss associated with trying to resolve a credit dispute.

Retail purchase protection

Now also available to debit cards as well as credit cards, retail purchase protection offers customers protection in case goods they purchased using their bank card is stolen or damaged accidentally. Retail purchase protection is limited to up to 90 days after date of purchase.

Extended warranty

 Another popular credit card security feature that is now available for debit cards is extended warranty, wherein the card issuer extends warranty for purchased goods.

Photo security

This optional credit card feature includes the cardholder’s photo printed on the card to discourage the fraudulent use of your credit card at checkout counters. Some debit cards have made this feature available for an extra fee. The key thing to remember is to protect your credit card information as well as you can and only use your debit cards with merchants you can trust.

Generally, credit cards offer an advantage over debit cards as government laws have made it the responsibility of credit card issuers to compensate cardholders should they fall victim to fraud. Debit cards do not enjoy the same level of legal protection. However, as most banks and financial institutions that offer credit cards also offer debit card products, they have made available most credit card security features available to debit cardholders as well.

Author's Bio:

Gilbert Bermudez writes for Compare Hero, Malaysia’s leading bank card comparison website. Loves fishing, swimming and a hobbyist.


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