Getting a secondary credit card number can be an important tool for stopping hackers and thieves when shopping on the Internet. Due to the controversy surrounding theft of credit card numbers, more and more companies are offering the ability for customers to get virtual credit card numbers for one-time use. Because many hacked or stolen credit card numbers are sold on the virtual black market, having a throwaway credit card number for online transactions is a valuable tool toward stopping thieves and achieving better peace of mind.
Check your online account access or call your credit card company to see if they offer secondary credit card numbers. Most major banks, including Citibank and Discover, will issue virtual credit card numbers free of charge to customers.
Signing up for the secondary credit card number service is usually easy and can be done over the telephone or online. You will then likely have to download software or create a separate online login to generate the virtual credit card numbers.
Use the number only one time each to generate maximum protection. You can keep creating new secondary credit card numbers for each purchase.
Buying virtual credit card numbers or secondary card numbers through online or in-store Visa, American Express, Discover, or MasterCard gift cards is possible if your credit card company does not offer secondary credit card numbers. However, due to the expense of the numbers ($2 to $10 per card) and the fact that if your actual credit card number is stolen you are rarely liable for purchases, this is probably not a good financial bet.