What happens if someone steals my credit card and uses it? And who is liable for credit card fraud in India? Such kinds of doubts are unavoidable if you are a credit card owner. Financial risks always accompany people involved in financial transactions. Credit cards are an easy way to access quick short-term loans without being subjected to a lot of paperwork. That is one of the biggest reasons people love to have several credit cards. If you have the basic knowledge of how to report credit card fraud in India and the further process, things are not that troublesome. Credit card fraud can be avoided by following some precautions. Know in detail regarding credit card fraud in India hereunder.
Types of Credit Card Fraud in India
Financial transactions through credit cards involve online processes whereby transaction is not confined to the customer and the issuer bank but there are other parties involved. The cyber lawyers in India can address any factual problems and suggest suitable solutions for credit card fraud in India. To have an idea of the types of credit card frauds in India, check below:
- Application Fraud - Sometimes, people may use your details and apply for a credit card. In such a case, a credit card may be issued in your name with your details while you did not even apply for the same and lack any knowledge as well.
- PoS Fraud - The Point-of-Sale (PoS) device may be tampered to hack customer’s data. Card information initially stored which the wrongdoer may be shared with a person or organisation for malafide purposes.
- Electronic Imprints/ Skimming - In this kind of fraud, information placed on the credit card magnetic strip is stolen and then used for making duplicate cards.
- Phishing - The fraudulent person may impersonate a bank official, mail the customer. Such a mail may contain an unauthorised link which further may ask for the credit card details of the customer. All such information may reach the unauthorised persons who may commit financial credit card fraud in India. Instances of customers getting phone calls from fraudulent impersonators seeking OTPs is very common.
- Card Detail Fraud - Someone may steal the credit card details like card number, expiry date, CVV (Card Verification Value) and name of the card holder. Through all these details, online payments can be made and all that is usually left is an OTP which may be achieved through hacked devices or fraudulent calls as well.
- Credit Card Lost or Stolen - Sometimes, mere carelessness may bring a lot of financial trouble like losing physical possession of the credit card when it is lost or stolen by someone.
- Misplaced Card - If you apply for a credit card, the same has been dispatched and has not reached you, it may be misused. The person may use the same for fraudulent purposes.
Credit Card Fraud Law in India
There is no separate legislation dealing with credit or debit cards. The Reserve Bank of India being the parent bank at the central level, keeps releasing guidelines so as to save the interests of both customers and banks. Liability for losses borne after credit card fraud in India is reiterated by the RBI. To curb any such frauds, RBI also promotes preventive measures on part of the banks to enhance security in online transactions.
For those who act dishonestly or fraudulently committing credit card fraud in India, punitive laws exist under the Indian Penal Code (IPC), 1860 as well as the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000. Punishment for credit card fraud in India ranges from 3 to 7 years of imprisonment and fine based on the offence committed.
What is the punishment for credit card fraud in India?
When it comes to the financial liability or punishment for credit card fraud in India, the liability mainly lies with the customer or concerned banks based on facts of the case. Clarity can be sought with the help of a banking lawyer. However, there are some legislations which punish the offender committing such online financial frauds as shown below:
Provisions under the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000
- Section 66C - If a person through fraud or dishonesty uses the electronic signature, password or any other unique identification feature of another, such a person is liable for imprisonment upto 3 years and fine upto Rs 1 lakh.
- Section 66D - If a person impersonates another using a computer resource for cheating another, he/ she is liable for imprisonment upto 3 years and fine which may be extended upto Rs 1 lakh.
- Provisions under the Indian Penal Code, 1860
- Section 468 - Anyone who forges a document or electronic record to be used for the purpose of cheating is punishable with imprisonment upto 7 years with fine.
- Section 471 - A person dishonestly or fraudulently using a document or electronic record as a genuine one while having knowledge of the same being forged is punishable the same way as if the same person forged such a document or electronic record.
How to Report Credit Card Fraud in India?
- When you get to know regarding the credit card fraud, quickly start with the complaint process without wasting any time, preferably within 48 hours
- Call the Customer Care No. of the bank who issued the said credit card
- Submit your complaint regarding credit card fraud in India
- Note down the ‘Complaint Reference Number’ for future reference
- Thereafter, make a call on Cyber Crime Helpline Number at 1930 (Special helpline for cyber financial frauds)
- Cyber Cells usually register a cyber financial complaint only within 48 hours of such fraud
- The concerned officials at the cyber cell will enquire the State and City where the incident took place, name of the complainant, credit card, bank account or Aadhaar card details and other details as required
- Here again, it has to be noted that confidential information like OTPs, CVV no. or PIN codes is not to be shared, even if asked by the officials
- In case 48 hours time frame has passed after the credit card fraud in India took place, rather than calling on the above no. of Cyber Crimes Cell, visit their website for online complaint
- Visit the official website at cybercrime.gov.in for cyber crime complaint registration
- Click on the link to report credit card fraud in cyber crime
- Select the appropriate category and enter the details carefully
- Information regarding credit card fraud complaint will be shared to the complainant’s mobile and email address as entered on the portal
- The above mentioned process is enough. However, to be on the safer side, the credit card fraud victim should also lodge a written complaint in the concerned bank branch at the earliest and also get the receipt as an express proof of complaint to the concerned bank branch as well.
- In case there is no response from the concerned bank or they are denying registration of any such financial fraud complaint, the person may visit the RBI website at rbi.org.in and register a complaint against the bank.
Who is Liable for Credit Card Fraud in India?
As per the RBI guidelines, the liability of a customer or bank shall vary based on facts of the case:
Zero liability of customer
- In cases of contributory fraud/ negligence/ deficiency on the part of the bank.
- Third party breach and reporting credit card fraud complaints by customers within 3 days.
Limited liability of customer
- In case of a customer's negligence of sharing confidential credentials, fully bear the loss until an unauthorised transaction is reported to the bank. After reporting, the bank bears the losses.
- In case of third party fault but delay of 4-7 days in reporting the unauthorised transaction by customer, the liability of the customer varies depending upon the type of account.
- For a delay of more than 7 days, the bank’s Board approved policy decides the extent of liability.
Can the bank find out who used my credit card?
The issuer bank is more responsible for compensating customers against credit card fraud in India than carrying out an investigation. However, the credit card holder may find out the place where the card has been used, share the information with police and help with any updates. One may also keep track of where payments were made and get CCTV footage etc.
Will I get my money back if someone stole my credit card?
New credit card holders often have the doubt as to what happens if someone steals my credit card and uses it in India or abroad for financial transactions. It is advisable to report such events as soon as possible since options of online complaints are also available. The facts of the case and vigilance on part of the customer holds utmost importance. For credit card fraud in India, the card holder may get 100% money back. However, there may be deductions based on the delay in credit card fraud complaints and also subject to the credit limit on such cards. For such events, banks have been granted some degree of decisive autonomy.
How to Avoid Credit Card Fraud in India?
Prevention is always better than cure. This is also promoted by the Reserve Bank of India which acts as the financial godfather of banks as well as customers. Financial frauds are not good for anyone, be it banks or a private customer. If customers are vigilant enough, more than half of the credit card fraud cases in India can be evaded. Given below are some tips for customers through which credit card fraud can be avoided by following:
- Keep it safe - A credit card should be kept in safe custody by the customers. It should be handled in such a way that it is not kept with the currency that it may mistakenly fall and be lost. Nobody should be able to easily approach the same as well.
- Vigilance - In the electronic era of the internet, receiving any unexpected emails, any unauthorised links, random OTPs, etc. should not be clicked on or disclosed to a third party. Even if someone impersonates a bank official, ignore the same.
- Report - People often wish to know what happens if someone steals my credit card and uses it in India. In such cases, it is the duty of the card owner to report the same to the issuer bank as well as the police authorities without any delay.
- Change details - It is advisable to keep changing credentials like netbanking passwords and card PIN numbers. However, it is also crucial to remember the changed credentials by the card holder.
- Review expenses - Credit card customers get a monthly statement of the expenses they made with the card. The monthly dues are payable by the card holders on that basis.