Which Type of Card is Safest to Use When Shopping Online?
Debit card or credit card? When it comes to securely shopping online, the answer may surprise you. Read on and learn how to keep yourself protected.
If online shopping is your “thing,” you may be wondering if you should be paying with your credit card or your debit card. Is one option safer for online shopping than the other? The short answer is: yes.
Credit Card Vs. Debit Card
If you normally use a debit card for your online shopping sprees, you may want to rethink that decision. If your card info is stolen, and somebody makes purchases, the credit card holder often has less liability than the debit card holder.
There are laws in place to protect credit and debit card users, but they both differ a bit in how they handle stolen information or fraudulent activity. Credit cards have the Fair Credit Billing Act, or FCBA, that puts the card holder at a maximum liability for fraudulent card use of $50. If your card is reported stolen (or lost) before these fraudulent shopping sprees occur, then your liability becomes zero.
There are many credit cards that offer this protection, but it is important to read the fine print before you commit to one company over another.
The Electronic Funds Transfer Act, or EFTA, is similar to the credit card laws. It also protects the original cardholder, yet with a significant difference. For debit cards, there is no maximum liability.
You have sixty days to report your lost or stolen card under EFTA laws. After that point, any money taken from your account is lost. That’s not the best of news for frequent online shoppers.
What You Can Do
If you must use a debit card for online purchases, make sure that it is a card without a large balance. If someone accesses your account, they won’t be able to run off with everything.
For better security, look into your overdraft protection. Overdraft protection is frequently used with a checking account, and, in case of a lack of funding in the checking account, it uses funding from the savings account to cover the remainder of the balance.
If a thief is using your card, they have access to both of your accounts–and can wipe out your checking and savings accounts in one blow. Contact your bank to see how your checking account is protected.
Of course, you can always use a prepaid debit card. This option offers more control. If you lose access to the account, you won’t be turning over your checking and savings account funds, but will only lose whatever you had put on the card.
Consult with your bank to see your best options. Then, help keep your web browsing safe from malware and virus threats with PSafe TOTAL. It offers advanced protection to keep your web surfing secure.