Card machine & credit card security tips

Find out how to stay safe when using your card machine and credit card.

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Card machine & credit card security for South African small businesses

Fraudulent crime or ‘fraud’ has been with us for thousands of years, but it continues to rear its ugly head today in South Africa. How can you keep your business and customers safe?

We got a first-hand look at how a small business owner, Jen, from Cyrus Farms Health Store, stays safe when using card machines.

Learn tips to use a card machine safely from a small business owner.

What card machine safety tips do you have for other businesses?

  • “I would say more discretion in safety not to use the card machine in a crowded space. Find a spot where you process payments with your customer in a secluded area. Then, offer your customer the privacy to put their bank card PIN. 

  • “Also, if they give you a card to pop into the card machine, don't turn away from your customers with the card. They're gonna blame you if there was an issue with the card or where they ended up being scammed at another place before they got to you. So I rather give customers a full sight of their card and the machine at all times. 

  • “Another tip will be if there is a pause in the card transaction, rather return the customer’s card and wait until everything is ready for you to process the payments.

  • “Try to control the number of people in your shop. Don’t let too many people into your shop, so you have more control over what's going on. You don't have to stress about somebody stealing stuff behind you or worse. 

  • “Also, always have somebody that's close by to you that you trust, whether it is a family or staff member or somebody else that you can trust. This person can also roam around and just keep their eyes on a busy shop so that there's an extra set of eyes to watch. I don't think small businesses like us can afford to have cameras covering the whole shop. 

  • “If there's a customer out of sorts on their own, don't leave them alone too long. Rather, make conversation with them. You can never be too careful.”

Jen gave us some good tips for safely using card machines with customers and staying safe while using a card machine.

Find out more about how to stay safe from criminals from credit card fraud and other fraud with the below tips from our qualified Transaction Monitoring team. Who are they? Yoco’s Transaction Monitoring team constantly monitors and safeguards your business from cyber-crime.

Learn more about card machines & credit card security

CNP fraud occurs in the absence of the card or cardholder. Crooks either copy or memorise your card number, its expiry date and the 3-digit card validation code, which you’ll find on the back of your card. Even though you still have the card with you, criminals still use the stolen information for conducting fraudulent transactions.

How can you prevent CNP fraud?

Be alert whenever you make payments with your cards, and they must never be out of sight. After every transaction, ensure it’s your card you get back and not someone else’s. When the bank issues you with a new card, immediately sign it. Check out your account statements regularly to see if anything stands out to you, and contact your bank immediately.

Watch out for card skimming

It’s easy for fraudsters to duplicate your card by copying or ‘skimming’ all the card details via a device hidden in an ATM or POS card slot. They spot your pin with a hidden camera or watch over your shoulder while you type in your PIN. You can undoubtedly prevent criminals from discovering your PIN.

How to protect your PIN at ATMs

These days the ATM keypad has edges that curl inwards to prevent a crook from seeing all the numbers you type in. Yet, be watchful at the ATM if anyone is trying to get close to you or distract you. The second you become wary, immediately cancel your transaction and remove the card. Always keep your eyes on the card at the ATM.

Card swapping is the next trick

Typically, a person will approach you at an ATM, offering you help to distract you. In the process, they’ll try and spot your PIN. Then, at lightning speed, the crook will swop your card, or he’ll set up a trapping device that ‘swallows’ your card. To stop this, you must never accept help from strangers and cancel the transaction if someone tries to distract you. When leaving, always make sure that the card you have in your hand is yours.

When a fraudster takes over your account

This is a cybercrime in action. You may have unknowingly given your personal details, such as your home address, cell phone number or ID number, to a crook. The criminal then reports the card as lost and a change of address and get’s a new card in your name. To prevent this from happening, always use strong passwords, while the bank should ask difficult questions to confirm your identity. Also, enable two-factor authentication for any access to your information.

Installing malicious software

A request may come via email for you to install some software. Avoid this entirely because criminals want you to install their malware to access your banking details. If you have made a mistake, block your baking profiles immediately and contact your bank.

What’s an SMS scam?

Fraudsters send you an SMS which requires you to provide banking login information. Completely avoid such an SMS.

 What is the difference between vishing and phishing?

Vishing is when someone pretends to be from your bank, requesting personal account information. A bank will never make such a request and immediately end the call. Phishing is when a criminal sends you a link to take you to a false bank site.  Never click on any link.

All of Yoco's products and services have world-class security features to protect our customers. For example, the Yoco app has several security features to protect users. Also, the Yoco app provides detailed info about any transaction as a Yoco merchant. Also, you’ll receive an instant notification with every payment. 

If you are uneasy about any card machine, credit card or other security worries, get in touch, we'll be glad to assist you.

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