District Attorney targets credit card ID theft
San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie M. Dumanis this week warned consumers that old credit card technology leaves them more susceptible to identify theft. The magnetic strip technology on the back of credit cards has been around since the 1970s. This old technology is easier for scammers steal and sell cardholder personal information
The chip in newer credit cards is a microchip that activates when the pay terminal sensor detects it. The chip contains a cryptographic key that allows a one-time use of the card, because it generates a unique key for that transaction.
This way, if the stored information on the point of sale terminal is breached, the card number can’t be used again for another transaction because it has the unique key embedded in it. The technology is presently in use in Europe and it dramatically reduced identity theft there.
Pin and chip (or EMV) is becoming increasingly common and the expectations are that by the end of the year, all the major retailers will have switched. Transactions where the physical card is not present, such as online transactions, will still have vulnerabilities that the chip and pin technology can do nothing about.
To get a pin and chip card, request a replacement from your financial institution. Most major banks have shifted over and are replacing cards as the old ones come up for replacement. Many smaller credit unions have not switched over yet, but they likely will by the end of the year.
San Diego Gas & Electric shares tips on identifying utility employees
A person, or persons, who have recently posed as utility employees asking to enter a customer’s home. It has been reported that the impostor will distract unsuspecting customers while performing “routine inspections,” while another impostor burglarizes the home.
SDG&E wants to assure all customers that SDG&E employees carry proper identification when called out to any job and is warning customers to verify the employee is wearing the proper uniform and identification badge before letting anyone in their home.
Here are some tips to help customers identify a SDG&E employee:
• Make sure that everyone in question is wearing a SDG&E-marked uniform.
• Ask any SDG&E employee to display a company identification card.
• Ensure that they have arrived in a SDG&E-marked company vehicle.
• Never leave the house if asked; SDG&E does not ask customers to leave your house unattended.
If you are suspicious, please call SDG&E at (800) 411-7343 to ensure that work is currently being conducted in your area.