10 common-sense strategies to help protect your debit card

Are you doing enough to protect your debit card from fraud? Here are ten common-sense strategies that could help you keep your money away from thieves.
Although recent statistics have shown debit card fraud to be on the decline, it’s still a serious concern among most Canadians. There are many common-sense ways you can safeguard yourself against this type of thievery.

The first thing you can do is to always be aware of your surroundings. It’s not safe to use an ATM in a deserted area. Instead, use one located inside your bank or in a well-lit area. Try to avoid holding your card in your hands before arriving at the machine. This makes it easier for someone to snatch it from you. There's still more you can do...

10 common-sense strategies to help protect your debit card

Ten common-sense strategies

Debit card personal information is usually secure, but you should always be on the lookout for suspicious activity. Here are some additional debit card security tips you can bank on:

  1. Keep your Personal Identification Number (PIN) confidential. Don’t ever share it with friends or family.
  2. Use caution when entering your PIN at a terminal. Cover the screen with your hand or body so others cannot see the information you have entered.
  3. Always report a lost or stolen card immediately.
  4. Keep your card in your sight at all times when completing a transaction. Don’t ever let a cashier swipe your card where you can’t see them or give them your PIN to enter it for you. Always make sure your card is returned to you after each transaction.
  5. Be sure to look over your bank statements carefully, comparing sales receipts to verify your transactions. If you ever notice any unusual activity from your account, contact your financial institution immediately.
  6. Memorize your PIN and change it often. Never use your birth year, phone number or the digits 1234!
  7. Don’t ever leave your transaction record at the ATM.
  8. If you’re ever issued a replacement debit card, cut up the old one immediately. Remember to sign the back of your new card and store it in a safe place.
  9. When visiting an ATM, go to one in a well-lit public area and always put your money and card away immediately. Be sure to shred your ATM receipts when you get home.
  10. Don’t let your card come into contact with anything magnetic—this can erase the information stored on the magnetic strip of your card.
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