Infosec Blog - Protecting Your Credit Card Information

April 28, 2017

Payment cards, credit and debit, are a target for cyber criminals because of their prevalence and relative ease to steal money directly. There have been some high profile cases where many credit cards numbers were stolen from a single merchant, but there have also been cases where card readers were compromised with skimmers and small video cameras that capture your information including your PIN. In most cases, the bank takes responsibility for the financial losses, but the violation to your privacy, the inconvenience of going without your card, and the effort of redoing automatic payments means these are serious incidents.  Because of this, organizations and individuals have responsibilities to keep credit card information secure.


What the University is doing

The UofG has over 50 ‘merchants’, where you can use credit cards, either on the web or in person.  Led by Treasury Operations In cooperation with CCS, the University ensures it meets an extensive set of security requirements on an ongoing basis, and formally reports once per year.  If you use your credit or debit card anywhere on campus, you can have high confidence that your information is safe.  More details are here.


What you can do

  • Check your statements carefully every month. A flurry of large purchases made by criminals will alert the bank, but a smaller recurring charge may not.
  • Visually inspect card readers at ATMs, merchants, gas stations, and kiosks to look for signs of tampering such as unexpected attachments or cables, broken or differently coloured casing, changes to the serial number, or other unusual external markings.
  • Use trusted websites for credit transactions, and look for the green security lock in the browser.
  • Be suspicious of email or phone requests for credit card information.
  • Consider a low value card on which to place internet orders separate from your main card.


Written by: Gerrit Bos (IT Security Officer, Information Security)