Protect your Credit Cards

This was sent out recently by the Cheverly Police Department and it’s great advice!

In light of recent major point of sale credit card compromises, the Cheverly Police Department recommends you reassess your knowledge of credit card protections and best practices.~Awareness is your best protection against becoming a victim.


1. Select a pin difficult to guess.
2. Never share your pin.
3. Change your pin on a regular basis.
4. Never carry your pin with you i.e. in your wallet or written on the card.
5. Place a strip on your card that demands identification be shown when used.
6. Contact your credit card company and set up a code word for telephone account verifications
7. Have your credit card company place a voluntary spending limit on your card i.e. no more
than $200.00 per transaction.~ Higher purchases can be made by pre-notifying your credit card
company that you will be making a higher purchase and temporarily raise your limit for that
specific transaction.
8. Consider a credit freeze.~ Some credit card companies will allow you to list only the
companies you regularly do business with.~Other charges to companies not on your list will
be immediately rejected.
9. Determine if you would like to purchase credit card monitoring protection i.e. LifeLock,
TrustedID etc.~ We do not recommend any specific service.
10. Never give your credit card number to anyone over the telephone, unless you initiate the call
and are comfortable with where you are calling.
11. Only carry the card(s) you intend to use.~If you lose your wallet with ten credit cards your
problem obviously will increase ten fold.
12. Maintain a secure file at home that contains all credit card account numbers and
passwords.~Never store this information on your cell phone or portable devices.
13. Shred monthly statements.~ Never place them in the trash.
14. Register with your credit card company, so you can view your current statement directly on
line.~Monitor it closely.
15. Shred old credit cards and solicitations for new credit cards received in the mail
16. Beware of phishing.~No legitimate bank or credit card company will ever send you an email
or call asking you to verify pertinent information.
17. When using your card, use the credit card purchase as opposed to the debit
purchase. Although you have the same protections pursuant to federal law, your credit card
account generally will be adjusted quicker than a debit card.


1. Use familiar ATM locations – Preferably bank or protected locations.
2. Be aware of individuals with no purpose in the area.
3. Limit your visits.
4. Physically check the scanner on the ATM.~Skimmers are placed over real ATM card
swipes.~If the device is loose or appears different in any way, move to another ATM and
notify the bank number posted on the ATM and the police.

5. When inputting your PIN, cover the touch pad with your hand and block the view of anyone
who may be watching.
6. Register to view your bank accounts on-line.~Check them frequently for charges you did not


1. Ask for identification in conjunction with the credit card.
2. Compare customer signatures.
3. Be aware of customers using credit cards to purchase multiple gift cards or cash cards.
4. Audit and monitor clerks.~Does a clerk have a higher percentage of fraudulent credit card
Acceptance? Could they be a confederate of people using stolen or false credit cards?

As always, if you have any questions, please contact the Cheverly Police Department.

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