Protecting Your Credit/Debit Information - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Protecting Your Credit/Debit Information

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WMDT 47 NEWS - The personal and financial information of more than 100 million Target and Neiman Marcus customers is reported to have been hacked over the holiday shopping season.

But are people here worried about their security?  And how can you prevent this from happening to you?

Less than a month after Target announced 40 million customers' credit and debit card information had been comprised, the retail giant now says up to 70 million more had their names, phone numbers, and email addresses stolen by hackers.

"That's absolutely crazy," says Ryan Cornahan of Salisbury.
Saturday, luxury retailer Neiman Marcus said thieves stole some of its customers' payment card information, and made charges over the holidays.

While this has some paying more attention to their personal finances, for others WMDT spoke to, like Cindy Linker of Hebron, MD "I'm not really worried about it, 'cause if it's going to happen, it's going to happen."

Though there's not much shoppers can do about the security of private companies like Target and Neiman Marcus, there are ways consumers can make themselves less vulnerable.

Keep an eye on your accounts, like Shawnee First of Salisbury, "as long as I check my credit score, I should know everything that happens with my credit."

Fraudulent charges are usually small.  Thieves typically know that's less likely to be noticed.

If you are hacked, not all cards are created equal.

With credit cards, the issuer will typically credit that amount back to your account and then investigate.

Debit cards can be more difficult, as there are fewer protections against fraud, banks will likely investigate before deciding to return money.

Still wary about your account security?  Some say, when you can, pay with cash instead.

Target says affected customers will not be responsible for fraudulent charges, stemming from the breach, and it's also offering a year's worth of free credit monitoring and identity theft protection to US shoppers.


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