Credit card fraud an ongoing problem locally, nationally

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By Xin Wen
Ingham County Chronicle Staff Reporter

Ten percent of Americans have been victims of credit card fraud, according to the Statistic Brain Web. Some of those victims are from Ingham County.

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“I have twice” been a victim, Ted Johnson, a bus driver, said.

Johnson said he got the verification from his bank first, but he did not report it to the police.

Thomas Holt, an assistant professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University, said fraud can manifest itself in different ways.

“Card data is obtained in various ways. For instance, information can be acquired through phishing emails or malware that captures keystrokes entered in web browsers which are then sent to the criminal,” Holt said. “Info can also be obtained through mass data breaches where someone hacks a database of information or point of sale terminal inside a store enabling access to customer data as it is entered.”

Under the Michigan Penal Code, criminals can face severe punishment for being convicted of this offense, and even be sent to the prison. However, not everyone has the awareness to protect their private information.

Holt offered a few rules too follow for credit card users.

“Individuals should use websites that they know and trust to make online purchases. Also, they should run antivirus software often to minimize the loss of data.” Holt said. “Consumers can also check their bank statements regularly to attempt to proactively identify suspicious transactions.”

Wence Chang said he wound not use his card on a dangerous-looking and untrusted website.

Another resident agreed: “I would be very careful about who I gave my information to,” Hunter Graham said.

Amani Marshall, a relationship banker for Chase, said the bank would protect 100 percent of its customers’ credit card amounts.

However, only 9 percent of American adults have the strong confidence of the credit card companies, according to the Pew Research Center.

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