Omaha FBI warns shoppers about credit card fraud

Posted By: Channel 8 Eyewitness News

Randy Thysse is the new special agent in charge of the Omaha F-B-I.

The feds are taking credit card, and other fraud, so seriously this holiday season, they rolled out their top man to warn local shoppers.

More spcifically, as throngs of people head to the malls and big box stores for Thanksgiving and Black Friday deals, special agent Thysse explained, there are three specific things you can do to protect yourself from theives.

Number one, do not let a clerk or worker, leave your sight with your card.

"That reduces your chances of being skimmed where they bad guys are going to take your credit card. They’ll swipe it once legitimately to make the transaction go through but often they have a pocket skimmer where they can run it through to get that information off your magnetic strip." >

Number two, try to avoid using a debit card in which you have to punch in a pin number.

"Just so you don’t have the risk of your pin being shoulder surfed."

Number three, use a credit card with a chip instead of one you have to swipe.

There is an algorithim, embedded in the card with a chip, that makes it very difficult to reproduce or steal the electronic information.

If you are shopping online cyber theives are lurking.

Special agent, Thysse says there is one thing you should never do. You know those emails you get saying **Follow this Link** to receive 30 or 40 percent off, and it looks like it’s from your favorite store. It might not be!

"It sends you to a different site then when you get to that site you think you are at the major retailer but you are not. You put in your credit card information and you become a victim and you don’t even know it. "

Instead type in the retailer’s website in your web browser, cut out the middle man.

"Because then you are know you are at that website. If it’s a legitimate email about a sale. The sale should be at the website.

"Also, be very careful about charitable contributions this time of year. The rule of thumb is to go with well known names in our community. There are many organizations that pop up this time of year, trying to get your money."

"If you have a family member that has donated to that organization, call them go online, look at the better business bureau. "

The bottom line is the season of giving is playground for takers.

One last reminder, and it cannot be overstated. Always check your credit card statement and look at each charge. If anthing appears to be improper, report it to your credit card company immediately.