How to Spot Credit Card Fraud Online

Today’s technology makes it easy for us to shop online and get what we want at the push of a button. The only problem is that it also makes it easy for criminals to use the same channels to use fake credit cards and stolen credit cards to commit fraud online and seldom run the risk of arrest. While most decent websites do have systems in place for secure payment services that prevent fraud, it is still important to stay vigilant when shopping online.

For the small business owner, preventing fraud is an almost full time job these days. But there are some ways to cut down on the risk of credit card fraud, and some of them seem like simple common sense. Here are a few tricks of the trade we think will help any online business stay on top of the growing problem of credit card fraud.

Problem Addresses

Sometimes the simplest thing, like an address that doesn’t actually exit, can be an easy tip off. If you are thinking that this is a hard thing to check from your little online business, think again. The website Zillow is a great resource for anyone who needs to be sure that the shipping address you have been given is legitimate.

It is a common practice for criminals to have packages delivered to houses that are sitting empty so they can simply pick up the stolen goods without fear of the address being traceable back to them. That is why it pays to check out any address that looks questionable. If the order is done with several attempts at the credit card number or where the shipping address is different from the billing address, check that delivery address out first.

Hidden Foreign Orders

One of the biggest problems with credit card right now is the proliferation of fraud centers in other countries that are hard to trace or act upon. If you don’t normally ship to Yugoslavia then why would you take an order from a computer in that country? Many fraud centers these days are found in these eastern European countries where computer literacy is high but employment is almost non-existent.

You can set your system up so that it will not accept orders from anyone with an IP address in a list of countries that you don’t actually ship to. It will detect these IP addresses and simply let them know that you do not accept orders from that country. While you will still have to deal with fraudulent IP addresses, this should cut down on the amount of credit card fraud you encounter.

Question Shipping Addresses

While it isn’t that uncommon for someone to make an order that is shipping to an address different from their billing address on the credit card they used to purchase it, it is still worth questioning if you should see this on an online order. True, they may be ordering that blue sweater for good old Uncle Ernie because it is his birthday, but you can always use the method named above to be sure the address is a good one first.

If they live in California but they want all that great camping gear shipped to an address in Maine, you can always call them at the phone number listed for the account to confirm. Customers seldom complain if you call to protect against fraudulent use of their credit card.