Just when we all thought cash was going obsolete it looks like this holiday season shoppers will be opting to use cash and not their charge cards to purchase gifts. Credit cards seemed more convenient and more efficient than cash until customers’ credit card information was being stolen and getting used for fraudulent charges. Since credit card theft is at its highest during the holiday season customers are not taking any chances this year. It has been reported that 48% of holiday shoppers this season are going to be using cash instead of credit cards to purchase gifts.
Within the past year there have been several major retailers whose data systems have been hacked into and their customers’ credit card information stolen. Major retailers such as Target, Kmart, Home Depot, and Staples all experienced major security breaches within this past year. The data breaches have ingrained fear into customers and as a result many people are taking action this holiday season to safeguard themselves against fraudsters. When customers see an incident like these repeatedly occurring they lose confidence in retailers. This has created an environment where the consumer perceives that they must protect themselves from transactional fraud and not rely on the retailer to protect them.
It is unfortunate that these high-profile security breaches have made it the responsibility of the customer to have to safeguard themselves against credit card theft . Retailers should be able to provide their customers with the confidence that their private information is protected byimplementing some type of safeguard or protection against credit card theft. Not only should retailers be storing their customer credit card information in a safe manner but they also should verify credit card information during transactions to make sure that a perpetrator is not using stolen data at their stores.
Unauthorized credit card transaction is at its highest during the holiday season. Last year it was reported that retailers lost $17.5 billion dollars to fraudulent credit card transactions. Retailers should be checking for authentic ID documents when credit cards are used; verifying that the person whom is using the card is the true cardholder. They should also check that a credit card is authenticate, by confirming the presence of UV security features that are found on each type of credit card. The expected increase in cash transactions this season creates another issue for retailers. Although increased cash transactions may decrease losses that result from fraudulent credit card charges, this does not make retailers any less susceptible to currency losses. If more customers use cash this holiday season, it means businesses will be more exposed to counterfeit currency losses. Retailers should not only be prepared to verify credit cards but should also be prepared with the right tools and practices, this season, to verify and authenticate currency. Knowing what security features are found on each denomination and having the tools to authenticate bills is fundamental for businesses who want to protect themselves against losses this holiday season.
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