Keeping safe as far as your money and general finances are concerned requires constant vigilance but largely some common-sense routines. For instance, we wouldn’t think of leaving our purse or wallet unattended in a public place just as we wouldn’t leave our credit card PIN on a piece of paper open to view (we shouldn’t actually write it down at all!).
However, how often do we cover our card when inserting or removing from an ATM (in case a spy camera has been installed above it) or leave valuables (car keys are a current burglar target) in full view of passers by on kitchen work-tops or tables near windows or doors? This latter is one of the commonest causes of cars being stolen from home driveways!
When it comes to electronic communication - whether by telephone or e-mail - it is vital to remember that no bank, building society, public body (be it District or County Council or Government department) will send unsolicited request (or demand!) for personal information such as account details, passport number, etc. by phone or e-mail. If this does happen you should refuse to give the information and treat the call/e-mail as potentially fraudulent.
Neighbourhood Alert regarding Ukash scam (22 Jan 2014)
You may also be wise to think about the way you divide your payments between your debit and credit cards. It has recently been pointed out that although credit cards often incur a fee for their use, they do ‘insulate’ users from their bank accounts. This may mean that using a credit card when away from your ‘home patch’ might be a sensible strategy in that any breach of your security wouldn’t give criminals access to the whole contents of your current account! This may well be worth the small surcharge that a credit card payment would incur.