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How to Identify Theft and Fraud to Your Credit

Being able to identify theft and fraud in your credit is an important step in protecting your finances. It’s crucial that you’re able to determine when theft and fraud are occurring. This will allow you time so that you can deal with the situation quickly. You have a much lower financial risk when theft and fraud are caught early. One of the best ways to detect fraud is by keeping a close eye on our credit report. Software such as online alert tools and applications are all commonly used methods to protect yourself from fraud. You can also stay safe by monitoring your accounts closely. Additionally, you can use a credit monitoring service to identify theft and protect your credit. Follow along below to learn more about identifying theft and fraud to your credit.

How Does Credit Card Fraud Happen?

Credit card fraud can happen in a number of ways that many people don’t think about. This is why it is always important to keep your credit card and personal information safe. One of the primary ways fraudsters can gain access to your credit card information is via lost or stolen cards. Criminals can then use this information to make online purchases. However, in-person transactions are less likely because they require a PIN. 

Another way that people can commit credit card fraud is by using your credit card’s details such as your credit card number, your name, and the expiration date of the credit card. Using this info means that they can use your credit card to commit fraud via mail, over the phone, or online. 

Fake credit cards or counterfeit cards

Fake credit cards or counterfeit cards are also common ways that credit card fraud occurs. Devices called skimmers or shimmers can be used in ATMs or other card readers at unattended locations. For example, gas stations or payment stations for public transit. These devices then capture your credit card’s information so that it can be encoded into a fake card. 

The next way that credit card fraud occurs is through application fraud. Application fraud occurs when a fraudster applies for credit in another person’s name. They can do so by using personal information such as SIN number, date of birth, name, and address, and by stealing personal documents to support the application. 

Lastly, a criminal can gain access to your credit card/personal information by stealing your mail. If you ordered a replacement card in the mail, a criminal could steal the package from your mailbox. This is why it is important to keep your mailbox secure and retrieve and sensitive packages as soon as they are delivered. 

credit fraud protection

How Can I Identify Theft/Fraud to My Account?

Credit card fraud is incredibly common, which is why you need a credit fraud protection strategy. In fact, according to an Equifax study done in 2016, nearly 53% of Canadians were victims of financial fraud. This is why it is crucial that you know how to identify theft and fraud as soon as it happens. While the best way to stay safe from fraud is by taking preventative measures, you should also know how to identify theft/fraud when it happens. You can detect criminal activity by doing the following:

  1. Review your monthly credit card statements closely to check for any unauthorized transactions
  2. Check your credit report often to ensure all of your personal information is correct, there are no new credit inquiries, opened accounts, or newly authorized addresses. 
  3. Review bills and invoices to make sure the information pertains to your account and not one that is unfamiliar to you
  4. Using your credit report to make sure that you are not on any collection agencies’ lists
  5. Use the identity theft monitoring services that your credit company provides to get real-time alerts about suspicious activity to your credit account(s)

Credit monitoring service for Credit Fraud Protection

You can also use a credit monitoring service like Borrowell, Mogo, or Credit Karma to stay on top of your credit accounts. Much of this software offers features like credit score updates, fraud detection, limit setting, and more. These features are extremely helpful in preventing theft and fraud and staying on top of your financial well-being. A monitoring service can help you keep your credit score in a healthy range which will allow you to do things like buy a house, rent a car, get a phone or take out a loan. It is so important to take precautionary measures so that your finances remain secure. If you are having trouble managing your credit on your own, consider entrusting the help of a reputable Canadian credit monitoring service. 

Learn more about everything that has to do with credit by visiting our credit education centre or contacting us today. We’d be happy to help you get your credit back on track. Feel free to reach out with any questions that you have about credit or detecting theft and fraud. Be sure to inquire about getting a car loan with us today! We look forward to helping you achieve your financial goals. Follow us on Facebook today!