Unmasked: Beware of card fraud when you are out drinking

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When they sung retail therapy is an addiction somebody somewhere must’ve been holding a black card. Unfortunately, in this incident, no one was, but they were lucky enough to get a fix for their addiction. A twitter user by the name Samuel took to social media to share his story after he noticed unauthorized transactions being charged from his debit card. This came days after he’d supposedly visited Milan Bar, located at Westlands, for a night out with friends. What had started as a conventional Friday night out of buying drinks and swiping debit cards left right and centre ended so, but no one knew what was to come about a week later.

According to Samuel, on that particular Friday he had used his card to buy drinks. Feeling no cause for alarm, after the waiter had instructed him to pick his cocktail from the counter, Samuel followed and he gave out his debit card to make the purchase. The purchase would take longer than anticipated and since he was inebriated, only his friend would point this out when Samuel returned at their table.

Fast forward to the present, after receiving that dreaded email that is when he noticed his card had been used to make online purchases on Jumia. From the statements he received, a sum of Ksh 25,000 had left his account unauthorized. 

 

Now you may be wondering how does this happen without notice. This is how.

If you normally use a master card to buy things online, you probably know that the key information you need to complete a purchase is the debit card number and the Cvv. A Cvv is a 3-digit number found at the back of your master card or Visa. Aside from these two pieces of information, you also need to know the billing address of that particular master card and the date of when the card expires.  Hence, if someone got hold of your card and managed to take a picture of it, you are most likely to fall victim of credit/debit card fraud.

 

Nevertheless, what baffles many in this incidence is; how were the transactions authorized by Jumia without them asking for a billing address? A billing address is usually an address connected to your VISA card and in almost all cases, it is the address you registered your card with. Unless you changed it. To mean that only a few people would know about it. Online shops use a billing address to verify the authorized use of a card thus reducing fraud. 

Regardless, cases of debit card fraud are common and unless you know the measures on how to prevent it, you are likely to fall victim.

In this particular incident, if the cardholder had known not to give out his card he could’ve saved himself the trouble. The safer way to make his purchases would’ve been to ask the waiter to bring the swipe machine and witness the transaction.

Out of context, if ever you notice that you do not have your card, or you suspect that you’ve lost it, notify your issuer to have it cancelled.  You could also have your card linked to your mobile number so that when a transaction is made you can get notified immediately. If Samuel had done so, perhaps he could’ve prevented the successive purchases that were made using his card. 

Milan has reached out to Samuel but nothing has yet to be confirmed on the matter. When we called to ask them what’s their take on the allegations proposed and if such an incident has ever happened again they refused to comment. 

 

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