City safe for credit card users - if you take care

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 07 July, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 07 July, 2011, 12:00am


Hong Kong is still one of the safest places to withdraw money from an ATM or shop online, but failing to pay attention could cost you.

Global credit and debit card company Visa has launched its Security Sense Programme to provide information to the public on preventing fraud and theft.

'Hong Kong is a chip-driven market,' said Kevin Lau, head of risk analytics at Visa, referring to cards where a personal identification number (PIN) is needed to process a payment. As a result, the transaction is more secure and the stolen data useless. 'But low fraud does not mean no fraud.'

According to an independent survey commissioned by Visa, fraud on Visa transactions in Hong Kong has decreased by 21 per cent since 2000. In Hong Kong, around 2 cents out of every US$100 spent with a Visa is subject to fraud. The global rate is 5 cents for every US$100.

The proportion of Hongkongers reporting issues with the card security was among the lowest in the survey, which covered 11 territories in the Asia-Pacific region.

'Hong Kong has a good record in terms of the actual personal experience of card payment fraud,' said Lau. 'However, cardholders' high sense of payment card security may lead them to overlook basic precautions, which the Visa Security Sense Programme intends to address.'

Leaflets and tips cards will be distributed in Central, Causeway Bay, Tsim Sha Tsui and Mong Kok.