Identity theft is a problem that has been growing rapidly in recent years. Many people have fallen victim to identity theft in one form or another at some point. One of the most common types of identity theft involves credit cards. An identity thief gains access to your credit card information and then uses the numbers to make a purchase on your account. While this is still a problem, a new system that is provided by credit card companies has the potential to thwart many of these issues. Virtual credit cards can be used effectively by consumers to protect their information and avoid identity theft.
What is a Virtual Credit Card?
A virtual credit card number is a number that is provided by the credit card company for temporary use. The number is given to the account holder and it can be used as if it were a regular credit card number to make a purchase. After a certain amount of time, the credit card number expires and becomes useless. In some cases, the virtual credit card number can only be used for a single transaction. In other situations, the card may be used at the same merchant over and over again. Some virtual credit card numbers expire after a few weeks or a month.
Why Use a Virtual Credit Card?
The main reason that people use virtual credit cards is so that they can avoid falling victim to identity theft. By using a virtual credit card number, the consumer can reduce the chances of allowing someone to access their account. For example, if a hacker is monitoring your computer when you make an online purchase, he could get the credit card number that you enter into the payment gateway. With a regular credit card number, the identity thief could take that number and use it to make many different purchases online. With a virtual credit card number, the number may expire after that use and it will not provide the identity thief with a way to make a purchase.
Is it Worth It?
You may be wondering why you would go to the trouble of getting a virtual credit card number to make a purchase. After all, you are only responsible for a maximum of $50 out of pocket on fraudulent credit card transactions, according to federal law. In fact, some credit card companies take it even further and do not hold you personally responsible for any fraudulent transactions on your account. While getting a virtual credit card number may not save you a lot of money in fraudulent transactions on that account, it could help you avoid further identity theft problems.
Some identity thieves go through the process of collecting a lot of different personal information about you. Your credit card number may simply be one of the things that they collect about you. Then they use all of this information to hurt you in other ways in the future. By using a virtual credit card number, you can provide the identity thief with some fake information that will not help him take advantage of your good name.
Not many people use virtual credit cards, but they can come in very handy. The process of getting a virtual credit card number is pretty simple. You simply need to contact your credit card company and get a virtual card number. When you get the number, you will also receive the information about how the number can be used. At that point, you are free to use the virtual credit card number to make purchases online at your discretion.
Father of three and married to a lovely women. Always looking for ways to save money, and invest it properly for my children's future.