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Is it safe to give your debit card details over the phone?

The rise of the Internet has allowed millions of people worldwide to purchase the goods they want quickly and easily, but in certain cases, purchasers still need to provide payment data over the phone.

This is where critical questions arise – is it safe to give a CVV number over the phone? And what do we need to do to protect our credit card data when making online payments? We are here to find out.

Is it secure to provide debit card information over the phone?

Generally speaking, yes. Debit cards (and credit cards, for that matter) and reputable merchants employ a number of technologies that greatly increase the security level when making payments over the phone.

One is your credit or debit card number, which you should only know as the card’s owner, and another is a short code called CVV – an abbreviation that stands for card verification value.

Printed on the back of your card, the CVV is a 3-4 digit code intended to provide additional security when making purchases. The CVV ensures that you are in possession of the card and not someone else, as the code shouldn’t be known to anyone other than the card owner.

Despite all security measures, you should never forget that fraudsters are always looking for ways to beat them and steal your credit or debit card information and, quite possibly, even your money! This is where you step in – doing a few simple things can further protect yourself and your earnings.

So here is what to pay attention to when providing card details, especially on the phone:

  • If using the Internet, make sure the good or service you want to buy comes from a reputable website. That said, always research the company offering the service or product beforehand.
  • Never show your card details in public.
  • Never provide your CVV number when asked on the phone or when processing a card payment in person. This is a sure sign of impending fraud! CVV numbers are for online purchases only.
  • When making a payment on the phone, always obtain the phone number from a trusted source and make the call directly.
  • Always check your monthly bank statement thoroughly for charges you do not recognise.

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​​How is your card data protected?

Earlier, we mentioned that sharing your card details is generally safe when initiating credit card transactions over the phone.

But let’s dive deeper into how your card data is protected.

The techniques adopted by most financial institutions and card issuers include:

  • Encryption;
  • Tokenisation;
  • PCI compliance;
  • Advanced fraud detection systems.

For example, your credit card number and other sensitive data are fully protected during phone transactions or phone sales via encryption. This security method transforms your data into a secure code that cannot be accessed by unauthorized parties.

On the other hand, through tokenisation, your card details are substituted with a unique identifier or token throughout the transaction. Via this token, you can keep your sensitive data safe and unexposed. 

When it comes to PCI Compliance, companies are required to comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard – a set of standards that ensures that card data is kept safe and secure at all times.

Note that card issuers and financial institutions exercise caution when it comes to customer safety. They usually use advanced fraud detection systems to track payments and look for suspicious activity. 

Tips for safe credit and debit card use over the phone

If you plan to use credit and debit cards to make payments over the phone, there are a few essential things to keep in mind. 

Here are which they are:

  • Ensure you are certain about the caller’s identity – verify the caller to ensure you’re communicating with a legitimate individual. You can do so by comparing the phone number of the company with that of the caller.
  • Be cautious of the phone you’re using – it’s highly advisable to conduct your phone payments from a private location rather than public phones or unsecured mobile phones. 
  • Keep a close eye on your accounts – it’s key to consistently monitor your bank and credit card statements to check for any activity you’re unfamiliar with. 
  • Create fraud alerts – often, financial institutions provide opportunities to set up fraud alerts that will notify you of unrecognised logins or suspicious activity. 
  • Minimise card-not-present transactions – choose to use your credit card online rather than over the phone where possible. 

Following these steps will help you stay safe and prevent data theft or unauthorised access to your payment cards.

What to do if you think your card details have been compromised or stolen?

If you’re suspicious that your card details have been compromised, taking immediate action is vital. 

The first thing we recommend doing is getting in touch with your card issuer and informing them about your concerns. They have the power to freeze your account to eliminate any risks of stolen funds. 

Another thing you can do is carefully monitor your bank account for unauthorised activity. This can help you detect fraud in its early stages. 

In addition, it’s useful to notify credit bureaus about possible theft. They can help by creating a fraud alert on your credit report, making it challenging for hackers to create new accounts using your name. 

How to accept card payments over the phone and email

Trading is a two-way street; while you may purchase goods online regularly, you can sell products and services online, too. The picture hardly changes in the security field – when getting card payment details over the phone for an intended purchase, you may be dealing with a cheater.

Merchants can also keep a few handy tips in mind when accepting card details via email.

Here are some of them to help you going forward:

  • Determine a reliable channel for obtaining the card details;
  • Always be aware when receiving such details through email;
  • Research your source of information;
  • Make sure to verify that the email you receive the card information from is not present in any scam lists;
  • Do not process cards with a suspicious origin.

Fortunately, technologies like myPOS MO/TO Virtual Terminal can protect you if you are the seller.

But what is MO/TO myPOS Virtual Terminal?

Our virtual payment terminal is a very secure online payment portal with various perks, such as no monthly fee in the UK and the rest of Europe.

A Virtual Terminal can help you accept card payments without the need for a physical payment terminal, and it comes with a bunch of other advantages.

Some of them include:

  • No need to install software;
  • Support for all popular payment cards;
  • Real-time transaction tracking from any location;
  • Limited access to authorised persons only;
  • MO/TO transactions are processed directly from the user account;
  • Usability on any device – computer, smartphone or tablet.

How does myPOS Virtual Terminal work step by step?

Accepting payments over the phone with myPOS Virtual Terminal is secure and easy. You can even take card payments with your cell phone.

Here’s how it works:

  • The customer calls you on the phone to provide their payment details;
  • You log into your myPOS account and enter cardholder data such as cardholder name, card number expiration date and, of course, the amount of money required;
  • Then click on the Submit button, and that’s it!

It’s simple, isn’t it? As for security, we’ll make sure the transaction takes place on a secure page and that you receive your payment in full and on time into your online merchant account.

Giving debit or credit card details on the phone is never totally secure, but certain actions can almost eliminate the risk of running into a fraudster. With our virtual terminal, you can be in the same position when selling goods online or on the phone.

Making it a part of your life is easier – just sign up with us here or email us at [email protected], and we will happily introduce you to the myPOS world!

Learn more about card payments and card machines

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