Most credit card companies are hastening to replace their old style magnetic stripe cards with the new EMV chip-embedded ones. The new embedded chips are designed with one purpose in mind: to add an extra layer of security to credit card purchases and to make fraud much less likely. The good news is, the new chips will do their work very well, and your purchases will be more secure than ever before.
The bad news? The change has given hackers and scammers another “in” when it comes to tricking people into giving up their personal information, a practice commonly referred to as “phishing.” It’s an old scam, given a new face. It works like this:
You get an email. It looks legitimate. It looks exactly like an email from your bank should look, complete with the proper formatting and logos. The body of the message says that your new, vastly more secure credit card is ready to be sent to you, but before they can send it out, they just need to verify a few pieces of information. Then of course, there’s the requisite link, which takes you to an online form box where the hackers politely ask you to give them all of your personal information. Name, address, date of birth, social security number, phone number, and of course, you’ll need to verify the number of the card you’re using.
The moment you do all of that, you’re done. They’ve got everything they need to steal your identity. Don’t let that happen to you. The reality is that your bank doesn’t need you to verify any of that information, why would they? They’ve already got it. Even if they didn’t have it, they wouldn’t ask you for it via an unsecure channel like email.
Hackers and scammers will go to great lengths to steal from you. They’ll happily take everything you have if you let them. Don’t fall for their games.