Booking your summer vacation online? Be vigilant with credit card fraud.

By on May 26, 2017

Summer is here and most families may be shopping online for cheap air tickets and hotel accommodation.

While e-commerce has become the norm for many, Japanese people are still concerned about the security of online shopping because scammers think of new and sophisticated ways to steal a person’s credit card information every single day.

Last year, in a survey on credit card use, Japan Times reported that
57.9% of Japanese respondents said they are ‘cautious’ about using credit cards.

They have every reason to be so.

Just two months ago, a 36-year old American man, together with his 41-year old Japanese wife and a 29-year old professional golfer were arrested on suspicion of credit card fraud using illegally obtained credit card information to purchase air tickets at Rakuten Travel. Online transactions involved the use of both electronic calculators and computers. source: http://www.sanspo.com/geino/news/20170305/tro17030511480004-n1.html

Japanese news website Jiji.com reports the total damage of 350 repeated air tickets and luxury hotel online transactions (from the same specified location) amounted to 40 million yen. It was believed  these tickets and hotel reservations were later resold.

HOW TO STAY SAFE

1) Scammers are everywhere their potential victims are. They can be on Facebook, Craiglist and other social media platforms posing as a legitimate business. They may be in a Facebook group with a fictitious name trying to re-sell tickets and hotel accommodation or any item or service at a cheaper price.

2) Nihon Credit Kyokai or Japan Credit Association’s website  issued a warning to credit card holders with virus-infected computers, about phishing scams. Just by browsing the internet, scammers can find you. Source:  http://www.j-credit.or.jp/customer/attention/attention_02.html

“Do not respond to unsolicited emails from your credit card company asking you to provide your membership details as a form of ID verification or data update on a fake website.”

3)  Invalid pop-ups you see on your PC screen don’t just happen without a reason.

“It is likely that your computer is infected with malware,” warns Nihon Credit Kyokai.

“For your safety, don’t click any pop-up windows and avoid downloading free applications. For a secured browsing experience, get a good security product that will remove any spyware on your computer.”

About Ted Tanaka

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