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Shocking levels of credit card fraud in SA

Credit card fraud is on the rise in South Africa. We look at the most common tricks criminals use, and what you can do to avoid them.
© kritchanut – 123RF.com
The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) recently released the latest card fraud statistics.

According to the report, credit card related Card–Not–Present (CNP) fraud is still the leading contributor to gross fraud losses in SA. CNP fraud accounted for 72.9% of the losses on SA-issued credit cards.

Debit card fraud, however, decreased in 2017. CEO of Sabric, Kalyani Pillay, says that this decrease is due to a reduction in lost / stolen cards and counterfeit-card fraud. The main increase in debit card fraud was again attributed to CNP fraud, due to certain banks now permitting online CNP transactions on debit cards.

On the credit card front, things aren’t looking good. Lost /stolen credit card fraud increased by 44.5% and accounted for 5.9% of all gross fraud losses in 2017. 76.1% of that occurred on home turf.

In 2017, debit card fraud still amounted to R342.2 million in loss. Credit card fraud totalled at R436.7 million, bringing the overall loss up to almost R800 million.

Pillay says that criminals are always adjusting their tactics to take advantage of innovations in the banking landscape. For the most part, though, they’re simply stealing, swapping or installing card-entrapment devices at ATMs. They then shoulder-surf victims in order to learn their PINs.

In this article, we’ll have a look at which scams to look out for and what kind of protective measures you can take to avoid them.
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