The prevalence of online shopping due to COVID-19 restrictions and the seasonal Christmas rush has contributed to an increase in Card Not Present (CNP) fraud. More and more consumers are regularly purchasing everything from basic household necessities to clothing and gadgets at the click of a button.
CNP occurs when the card or card holder is not present while a fraudulent transaction is being conducted.
It is a visa/debit card scam in which the customer does not physically present the card to the merchant during the fraudulent transaction. This occurs with transactions that are conducted online or over the phone.
A criminal steals personal details of a card and present it legitimately. During the fraudulent transaction, the criminal uses the name, Card Verification Value (CVV) number and pin code on a legitimate card; shops with it without necessarily having the card in his/her hand.
It is harder to prevent than regular card-present fraud because the merchant can personally examine the card for signs such as a missing hologram or altered account number etc.
To combat CNP fraud;
- Many online merchants now require the CVV number which is on the reverse side of the physical card to validate the card holder.
- Visa card payment processes also use a number of steps to minimize CNP fraud. This is by verifying that the address provided by the customer at the time of purchase matches the billing address on the file with the bank, card expiry date, card number and name. Others include checking the validity of the 3-digit security codes (CVV) and the prohibition of merchants from storing pin codes.
All this information may however be stolen electronically through online phishing, by dishonest employees/ MOMO vendors stealing card information or MOMO pins. Information can also be obtained from hacking of a merchant’s data base.
Tips to Stay Safe
- The public is therefore advised to desist from saving personal and MOMO/ banking details on any merchant website.
- Online shoppers are to decline such requests and always log out immediately after shopping.
- Online shoppers are also to make sure to keep the anti-virus software on all devices used for such transactions updated to avoid their information being stolen by online hackers.
Source: Public Affairs Unit