While credit cards are pretty comfortable and convenient to use in comparison to cash, it is equally challenging to keep them safe. Just as you can easily lose some cash, you may also lose your credit card in the blink of an eye. Hence, it is essential to know how you can keep away from losing your credit card and what you should do, if your credit card is lost.
Here’s a complete guide!
What would Happen if You Lose Your Credit Card?
A credit card has access to all your personal information, and has a lot of monetary value. Hence, losing a credit card would risk your personal and financial stability, both at once. Additionally, there are also quite a number of frauds involved with credit cards, owing to the huge financial benefits that they have. Considering all this, you may have to witness these problems if you lose your credit card-
- The thief or fraudster may use your lost credit card to make purchases and deduct amount from your credit limit
- Your lost card may be used to steal your personal identity with the help of the account number mentioned on the card
- Your personal information may be accessed by criminals for various fraudulent purposes such phishing scams taking place through phones, emails or social media channels
- Fraudsters may copy your credit card passwords, pin codes, or skim your stolen credit card’s data using card readers
- Your existing credit or loan accounts may also be used by the fraudsters, who could eventually change your email addresses and passwords and take control of all your existing accounts
Steps to Take if Your Credit Card is Lost or Stolen
Losing a credit card is a big deal, and as and when you realize that you have lost yours, you must take the necessary steps and act upon it. Failing to do so will land you into huge troubles.
Listed below are a steps that you must take immediately if your credit card is lost or stolen-
Inform Your Bank
Once you have all the required information ready with yourself, get in touch with the customer service executives of your bank and inform them about the same. Along with having a telephonic conversation, you should also write an email to them with all the details. This written account will help you and your bank keep a track of misplacement of your card and will help in the further process of re-application.
Block Your Lost Credit Card
The first thing to do when you realize that you’ve lost your credit card is to get it blocked. This is because the first thing that the thief/fraudster who finds your stolen credit card will do is take out all your money, and you definitely don’t want that to happen. Hence, getting your credit card blocked is one thing that you should do in an instant.
Gather Information Related to Your Card
The next thing you need to do is collect all the information related to your credit card. This information should include your bank’s branch, your account number, your credit card’s number, the name on your card. Along with this, you will also need to provide information about the date and time when you noticed that your card was missing, the last time when you used your stolen credit card, and when and how did you inform your bank about your lost card.
Monitor Your Card’s Billing Statement
Right when you lose your card, you should start keeping a check on your credit card statement in order to check if your card is being monetarily misused by the thief/fraudster. There may also be cases when you lose your credit card and it is found by a genuine person who would try to return it back to you. Hence, monitoring your credit card’s billing statement is essential in identifying whether your credit card has been stolen or you have actually lost it somewhere. Additionally, if you find any suspicious activity on your credit card, inform the same to your bank immediately.
File an FIR
Since,there may be frauds involved in the losing of your credit card, it is important to file an FIR with the police. This would be beneficial for you in case the fraudulent party misuses your credit card or your personal information associated with the card. An FIR would also serve as a legal proof of your loss in case you decide to apply for a duplicate of your stolen credit card.
Deal with Unauthorized Charges
It is important to note that when you lose your credit card, there may be chances that you could be held liable for the losses that you incur. However, as per the guidelines laid down by the RBI, any losses/fraudulent transactions reported within 3 days of losing the credit card will be borne by the bank, and not the cardholder. Hence, it is important to keep your bank in loop, right from the beginning in order to avoid dealing with any unauthorized charges on your credit card.
How to Apply for Your Lost Credit Card?
If you have lost your credit card once, you must re-apply for a new one only if it is absolutely necessary. There may be situations where you don’t actually need a credit card but carry it only for the sake of it. In such cases, handling a credit card and keeping it safe could be challenging. Hence, re-apply only if you need it. Listed below are the steps to follow-
- Visit the bank’s official website and log in to your account using your login credentials
- Click on ‘Menu’ and go to the ‘Cards’ section
- Click on the ‘re-issue’ or ‘service request’ option in the ‘Credit Cards’ section
- Enter your card number and some personal details like your occupation, mobile number, monthly income, PIN code, etc., if prompted
Once you have filled out the form, you will receive the new card within a few working days at your mailing address.
How to Keep Your Credit Card Safe?
Here are a few steps that you should take to prevent your credit card from getting lost or stolen-
- Carry your credit card only where necessary
- Do not share your credit card details with anyone
- If you have closed your credit card or if it has expired, make sure to cut it into a few pieces through the credit card number and your name before throwing it away
- Have all your credit card details such as card number, CVV, PIN, expiry date, etc. written somewhere safe
- Monitor your credit card’s billing statement regularly. Any suspicious activity should be reported immediately
- Never share any of your credit card details over the phone. Note that your bank executives would never ask you for any such information, and if anybody is doing so, it’s an absolute fraud