Be Aware of a New Online Scam: E-Skimming

December 10, 2020

Although the increased use of credit and debit cards with chip technology has resulted in a decrease in fraudulent purchases, this technology offers no protection for online purchases. A newer and expanding threat to online shopping known as E-Skimming is occurring more often. Here is more information about E-Skimming and some ways to protect yourself from this latest form of fraud.
E-Skimming happens when criminals infiltrate businesses and government agencies’ websites with malware allowing them to steal credit and debit card information as you are inputting your information to complete purchases. Because the transactions are completed, neither you nor the merchant are usually aware that E-Skimming fraud even happened. 
Once scammers obtain a copy of your card information, they can use it to conduct fraudulent charges. And because it is not know immediately fraud has happened, these types of attacks are often successful and very hard to detect.
However, there are steps you can take to keep from becoming a victim of E-Skimming. Here are a few:
Use a credit card instead of a debit card. Most credit cards are protected by zero fraud liability where debit cards are not. Debit cards also offer thieves direct access to your account, where credit cards do not.
Do not store your card number. Storing your credit card number or personal information on file with a merchant can put you in a position for fraud. Besides possible E-Skimming, if a data breach occurs, this makes you more vulnerable to having your credit card data stolen. 
Check out unknown merchants before shopping. Check reviews and search online to be sure merchants are legitimate before making any transactions or providing personal information.
Do not click on links in emails. If you receive an email with a link to connect to an online merchant, search for the website through the web browser and confirm the sale or ad is correct before clicking the link. Email links can sometimes harbor malware that can affect your computer, and allow scammers to gain access to your sensitive information.
MSUFCU can help. MSUFCU offers members several ways to help prevent fraud, including:
  • eAlerts: Members can set up eAlerts for their accounts using the MSUFCU Mobile app which can make them aware of possible fraudulent transactions 
  • Visa Fraud alerts: These alerts are similar to account alerts; members will know about charges pending so they can identify discrepancies 
For information about these technologies, visit

Tags: Security, Credit Cards, Money Management