Limit Your Loss


With the holiday shopping season around the corner, Americans will not only stack up gifts, but rack up credit card purchases. As spending increases, so does the likelihood of falling victim to identity theft or fraud schemes.


Each payment method—including credit or debit cards, cash, checks or electronic payments—carries varying consumer protections and potential out-of-pocket costs in the event of theft or fraud.

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, a nonprofit consumer information and advocacy organization, offers these tips for safe shopping, and in the event of fraud, how to recoup your losses:

Take home receipts . Save them or shred later instead of throwing them in a store’s trash (they may have your account number printed on them).

Avoid suspicious-looking ATMs and card readers . They can be scams. Counterfeit cards can be made by “skimming” checkout-lane card readers, where account data from cards’ magnetic strips are secretly copied.

Report fraudulent charges immediately . The Fair Credit Billing Act limits your loss on credit cards to $50, but you must notify the card company within 60 days. For debit cards and electronic transfers, however, your liability remains $50 but must be reported to your financial institution within two business days.

Write checks only to people you know . They include both your account number and bank routing number, making your account easily accessible to fraudsters.


Soure: Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, www.privacyrights.org/fs/fs32-paperplastic.htm .

SPONSORED REPORT

How the election may affect taxation of business income

This report summarizes recent proposals to reform the U.S. business income tax system and considers the path to enactment of any such legislation.

VIDEO

How to Excel pivot a general ledger

The general ledger is a vast historical data archive of your company's financial activities, including revenue, expenses, adjustments, and account balances. J. Carlton Collins, CPA, shows how to prepare data for, and mine data with, PivotTables.

QUIZ

Did you follow 2016’s biggest accounting news?

CPAs will remember 2016 as a year of new standards and new faces. How well did you follow the biggest accounting events? The 7 questions in this quiz will help you find out