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Students affected by card fraud

While credit and debit cards are a very safe way to pay for goods or services or to withdraw cash, it is important to take the necessary precautions to ensure that your card and card details are kept safe. Read Stephen’s experience below:

Stephen, a student at Trinity College and spoke about his experience of bank fraud: “Basically, I lost my card and within the space of only a short few hours, I’d already had multiple transactions on my account, but only maybe two of them went through. I could see the failed transactions of maybe another six or seven, so the total was about €60 or €70 taken out of my account.

“Luckily I never have too much money in the account. It’s the benefit of being a broke student!”

Stephen thinks he left his card behind him in a shop one morning, and by that afternoon he noticed transactions were being made with the card, all through online transactions.

He says he felt “kind of stupid” when he realised someone had used his card. He had been waiting to cancel the card as he wanted it for online purchases, but he recognises in hindsight that this wasn’t the best thing to do.

Stephen’s advice to anyone who loses a card is: “As soon as you lose your card, just cancel it straight away. Someone can find it and use it.”

He’s still unaware as to who used his card, but he’s happy he got the money back, and he found the bank to be very professional and reassuring: “When I rang my bank, I was straight through to someone… They told me, ‘you’ll get that money back by the end of the day.’ And then the [new] card came in another day or two, so I was back in action within about two or three days.”

Another person Stephen knows was almost scammed too when fraudsters locked their laptop screen and rang the person, claiming to be Microsoft Support. The fraudsters demanded money to unlock the computer, but Stephen just told the person to hang up. In the end, Stephen wiped the laptop clean as the person didn’t have anything of great importance on it worth saving.

Stephen says he is definitely more careful now when it comes to fraud: “If your card goes missing, cancel it. It’s that simple, do it.

“I suppose, in general, people probably are more aware, but enough people aren’t. So, it’s still a big business. They only really need to get a small number of people and it’s going to be very lucrative. They don’t need every single person to fall for it.”