How to Catch Stolen Credit Card Numbers

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Be careful with online purchases to guard against cyberspace theft.
Be careful with online purchases to guard against cyberspace theft. (Image: PhotoObjects.net/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

Stolen credit card numbers are not easily obtained online; however, it is still important to know how to catch stolen credit card numbers. In the event it does happen, you can then prevent as much damage as possible. Keeping a few pointers in mind will help you identify illegal activity on your accounts which will spare you considerable trouble.

Keep a log of your credit cards purchases. This doesn't have to be what you purchased, just the amount, store and location. Often, credit card numbers are stolen in a store and charged in that store or another in the chain. This will help you to immediately identify those types of activities. If you reveal anything strange, contact the identity theft protection services department at your credit card company to report the activity.

Check your account online. This will help you identify any areas of illegal activity. First, look at the locations of the charges to see if any are from other states or countries. Then look at the quantities and verify them against your log. Look for multiple charges at the same store or charges at different stores you did not visit. If you find anything strange, again contact the identity theft protection services department at you credit card company to immediately report the activity.

Avoid online credit card purchases. Instead, use PayPal or a similar service which is much more secure. If you use your credit card online, too many possibilities exist for fraudulent charges. This is not to say you should never make online purchases; just be aware of your payment method.

Set up theft protection services if you make a lot of charges that could leave you open to getting your credit card numbers stolen. You can hire out these services privately but can also get them through the card company. Your company's identity theft protection service is probably sufficient for most people.

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