What to Do If a Credit or Debit Card Gets Skimmed

Skimming is a technique by which a person can catch information from the magnetic stripe of a person’s credit or debit card.  This can be easily done by a person carrying a battery-operated reader.  Any time that you hand your card over to a person of the purpose of payment such as in a restaurant or fuel station, a simple battery operated device in a pocket can be used to skim the information from your card and be used to make another card or sold to other people.  The purpose of making a duplicate card will be to charge your account with fraudulent transaction and purchases.  In case the card that has been skimmed is a debit card then the following fraudulent transactions will not be reported to your credit history and therefore will not impact your credit score.  However if the card was a credit card and fraudulent charges are made on a duplicate card then you will need to dispute those with the credit bureau in order to have them removed.
Usually skimmers more interested in making duplicate debit or credit cards in order to make fraudulent purchases rather than stealing your identity.  Magnetic stripe information is ready useful purpose of identity theft as many banks and credit card companies have taken extra precautions to reduce the information that can be stolen from the magnetic stripe of a credit or a debit card.  It usually contains the BM amount of information required for the transaction to go through without risking the identity of the individual.  The information contained on a magnetic stripe usually does not include your name, address of Social Security number.  Without this can have an information the person will not be able to go to the extent of applying for a new credit or manipulating your existing credit accounts.

You should immediately reported the theft of the credit or debit card to the police and call up the customer care to have the card cancelled so that for the transactions cannot be made on it.  You can also put a fraud alert on the credit report in order to notify all lenders that you may have been made a victim of credit fraud.

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