CONSUMER ALERT: Keep an Eye Out for Fraudulent Credit Card Charges
June 12, 2014
Media Contact: Jerad Albracht, Senior Communications Specialist, 608-224-5007 or Jim Dick, Communications Director, 608-224-5020
MADISON – Wisconsin consumers should regularly monitor their credit card
statements for unauthorized charges. Recent widespread scams have involved
small, unauthorized charges on credit cards that are easily overlooked by
“Scammers hope that consumers will overlook the small charge on their
monthly statements or not review the statements at all,” said Sandy Chalmers,
Administrator of Trade and Consumer Protection. “Report unauthorized charges
immediately to minimize your liability.”
A consumer recently complained to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture,
Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) about an unexpected charge of nearly $13
on his credit card from an unfamiliar company. This fraudulent charge included
a foreign transaction fee of $0.37. This situation is similar to another recent
scam where consumers worldwide found unauthorized charges of $9.84 on their
monthly credit card statements.
Consumers should closely review their monthly credit card statements. If you
find an unauthorized charge on your statement, immediately contact your financial
provider (using the number on the back of the credit card) to report the fraud
and to request a new card.
There are a number of steps you can take to protect your credit account and
to lessen the potential for fraudulent activity in your accounts. Some tips to
- Do not give your
account number to anyone on the phone unless you made the call to
a company you know to be reputable.
- Carry your cards
separately from your wallet to minimize your losses if someone
steals your wallet or purse. Only carry the card you need for that outing.
- Keep your eye on your
card during a transaction. Make sure you get it back before you
- Never sign a blank
receipt. Draw a line through any blank spaces above the total.
- Save your receipts
to compare with your statement.
- Open your bills
promptly — or check them online often — and reconcile them with
the purchases you have made.
- Report any
questionable charges to the card issuer.
- Notify your card
issuer if your address changes or if you will be
If you lose a credit card, call the card issuer as soon as you realize it is
missing. Under federal law, once you report the loss or theft, you have no
additional responsibility for charges you did not make and are only responsible
for $50 in charges for unauthorized purchases made before you reported it
missing. If you suspect that the card was used fraudulently, you may have to
sign a statement under oath that you did not make the purchases in question.
For additional information or to file a complaint, visit the Consumer
Protection Bureau at datcp.wisconsin.gov,
send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
or call the Consumer Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-422-7128.
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