Disputing Fraudulent Credit Card Charges: All that You Must Know!
Unauthorized or fraudulent charges on your credit card can be fearsome as well as stressful to deal with.
Thankfully, you will not have to make payment for such charges, but only if you are able to find as well as report them immediately after they come to your notice.
For finding these fraudulent charges, you will have to pay proper attention to each transaction mentioned in the statement of your card, no matter how small or big the transaction is.
Instead of waiting for the billing statement to be sent to your mail, you can find the unauthorized charges faster by monitoring the transactions you make online throughout the month.
Detecting the Fraudulent Charges on Your Credit Card Early
These fraudulent charges include all those types of charges mentioned on your credit card statement for which you did not give any permission. Usually, these unauthorized charges are a result of the theft of your credit card. This can either be a compromised card number or a stolen card.
At times, unauthorized or fraudulent charges could arise due to a computer glitch or a clerical error. In any case, it is solely your responsibility to look for such charges and report them as soon as possible in order to reduce your liability, especially for those charges that you did not make.
Before you report these charges to the provider of your credit card, ensure that these transactions were not made by an authorized user of the account or a joint account holder.
Most of the fraudulent charges remain unnoticed for months as the cardholders do not review their card statements thoroughly.
When it comes to making corrections on these fraudulent charges, early detection becomes crucial. You could be held liable for these charges in case a long time has passed between the time of the charge being made and the time it is being reported.
You must ideally report the fraudulent charges and other billing errors on your card to your provider within a few days from the date on which the statement having errors was mailed to you.
You should make sure that you report all types of unauthorized charges to the issuer, regardless of the amount. There is a type of card scam under which the thieves make a charge as small as 1 dirham, then following up with a huge charge. This small charge is basically only a test for checking if your account is active and whether the huge charge will go through or not.
Reporting the Fraudulent Charges
As soon as you spot a fraudulent charge on your card account, make a call to your issuer using the contact number mentioned on the backside of the card. In case you do not have your card and have not saved the copy of the number, you can use the latest billing statement or the website of the issuer for finding the correct number.
Do not provide your card details and other information to anyone who emails or calls you claiming to be your card issuer. It should not matter how authentic the sender or caller seems to be. This can be a phishing scam, which the thieves make use of for getting access to your card details or personal information. You must also make sure you enter your personal details on legitimate sources only while you apply for credit card.
Usually, the scam is to get access to the 3-digit security code mentioned on the backside of your card or the billing zip code.
Always contact your card issuer using a trusted number, for example, the one mentioned on your billing statement, credit card, or the official website of the card issuer.
Once you get your hands on the correct number for your issuer, call them for reporting the fraudulent charges. Typically, they will cancel the compromised card account. They will then re-issue a new card on a new account number.
In order to further make sure that your rights stay protected, you must follow up through a dispute letter, which explains the fraudulent charges. Put your phone call and the name of the customer care representative you talked to as a reference in the letter.
Some card providers will first ask you to try and resolve the fraudulent charge with the concerned merchant. You can easily find out the merchant by checking your card statement.
However, at times the thieves might have a spoofed the information of the merchant making it look like the charges have been made with a specific merchant when this wasn’t the actual case. In such cases, the issue can be resolved with your card provider and not with the merchant.
Protection of Rights
As per the law, you are liable for only a certain amount of fraudulent charges made before you inform your provider about a missing card. However, a lot of providers have the policies for 0 fraud liability. These policies help in removing your liabilities for these charges.
If the fraudulent charges were made using your account information instead of your card itself, you would not be held responsible only if you still have the physical possession of your card.
If you have disputed a fraudulent charge, typically, the provider will remove such a charge from your card account. Meanwhile, you will not be liable for making payment of the disputed portion of the balance.
The provider cannot charge any interest or fee on that balance unpaid, unless, it is later figured out that indeed you had authorized the charge.
The Parting Words!
You should report any fraudulent charge on your credit card as soon as you come across them. These charges should be reported either to your card issuer or to the concerned merchant.
After notifying the concerned party, you must follow up the disputed charge through a letter to the card issuer for ensuring the protection of your rights.
You must, without fail, take measures for protecting your card details and other information for preventing any fraudulent charges in the future.