Let's protect our cards!

This is a little personal campaign, in which I want to raise retailer awareness of the need to protect customers debit/credit card details from thieves.

The Background - With the start of Chip And PIN still over a year away at the time of writing, we still have to pay for goods purchased on debit/credit card using Swipe And Sign. We all know the potential this gives for thieves to have a field day. Each card receipt contains the card number, the expiry date, the issue number and the authorised signature. If a thief was to get their hands on a card receipt, they could use that information to place fraudulent transactions on the cardholders account. Chip and PIN is the card industrys efforts to counter this criminal activity - what the criminal can't see (the PIN number), they can't use!

However, until Chip And PIN comes into everyday use, it is surely upto the retailer to protect its customers card details, so that thieves cannot get at our money.

The Problem - Some retailers do not seem to think they should be protecting our card details, and this sickens me. When purchasing goods at certain retailers, the cashiers do not put their copy of the signed receipt away safely. When I tell them about this, and what could happen if the receipt was stolen, the cashiers give me a blank look as if to say "So what?", and it's this attitude that I want changing.

Retailers, I ask you the question "What if I pay in cash?" Would you leave the cash laying around for a thief to take? No of course you wouldn't, so don't do it with my card receipts!

The Campaign - Unfortunately, telling retail staff about this problem doesn't seem to be having much of an effect, as this shocking practice of not protecting our card details is still going on. This is why I'm starting this campaign to raise retailer awareness, by the only method that seems to work, naming and shaming.

I would like ask every credit/debit card holder who reads this to join me, in trying to raise retailer awareness of card fraud. If you pay by card, and the retailer doesn't put the receipt away securely, tell them that what they are doing is wrong, and what it can lead to. Like myself, you should refuse to leave the counter until the receipt is away safely. If you want that retailer to be added to this name and shame list, please email me with your story, and I'll happily add it on.

Retailers - I would equally love to hear your stories, and what you are trying to do to combat card fraud. If on the other hand, you are named and shamed on the list below, then again, I would love to hear from you, to hear what you are doing to improve matters. But please be aware, if I ever see any fraudulent transactions on my accounts, I will not hesitate to tell the police if I have shopped with any retailer that hasn't protected my card details properly, so they can investigate you.

Links: Email your stories to me
The Official Chip And PIN website
The guestbook - show your support for this campaign

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It is with deep regret that I have to do this, but if it's the only way you'll learn, then it is for the better good

More to follow...

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