‘Tis The Season To Prevent Credit Card Fraud: 4 Credit Card Fraud Prevention Tips For Small Businesses

As the holidays approach, you might be excited to see more business come your way. But some of your sales could come from dishonest customers who intend to commit credit card fraud. These tips can help you and any employees you have prevent this common business problem.

Train Employees to Recognize Fraudulent Cards

For in-person transactions, it’s important to ensure every card you and your employees run is legitimate. If a card stands out as seeming fake, it probably is. Make sure it features a hologram, a magnetic stripe, and a panel with the customer’s signature, for starters. The front of the card should also have a raised account number that is identical to the account number on the back.

Know How to Process Online or Phone Orders

If you conduct business online or on the phone, be sure you collect the right information from cardholders. This means you need to carefully record the whole card number, expiration date, and the three- or four-digit verification number on the front or back of the card. It’s also best to make sure the billing and shipping addresses are the same on the order.

Request Identification

Asking for ID is one of the simplest ways to reduce the chance of credit card fraud, but many small business owners and their employees simply forget to do it with every transaction. It might slow down the pace a bit, but it can help prevent fraud, so it’s worth it. If you’re not sure you want to ask every customer for ID, try saying the name on the card out loud before completing the transaction. If the customer does not respond to the name, request to see ID, because this is a hint that the card does not belong to him or her.

Know the Warning Signs of Fraud

If a customer is not willing to provide you with ID, a verification number, or any other reasonable information that you ask for, you should be wary. Most customers who are using their own cards have all this information available and are fine with providing it, especially since it could protect them from fraud, too. If you’re taking an order online or over the phone and the customer requests expedited delivery, such as next-day shipping, you should proceed with caution since this is another common sign of fraudulent card activity. After all, credit card thieves usually want to use the card before it gets cancelled.

Following these tips can save you the headache and expense of dealing with credit card fraud as the holidays come to a close.

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