Debit card fraud on the increase in the US

A report just out in Washington says that, owing to the complex anti-fraud systems now being employed by the credit card industry, fraudsters are turning their greedy eyes on to debit cards.

The result, says the study, is that debit card fraud in the Seattle area is definitely on the rise.

US authorities say that thieves are using a variety of methods to steal debit card information, including skimming devices at ATMs and petrol stations, database hacking and phishing for information with unsolicited e-mail.

Most of the frauds involve mysterious ATM withdrawals in foreign countries, so the banks are recommending that debit card users keep a close eye on their bank statements to watch for unauthorised withdrawals.

Reading between the lines, it seems that banks - in the US, at least - are less watchful for fraud on debit than on credit cards. The main reason is, of course, that the former is our money, whilst the latter is the bank's money.

Or am I just being cynical?...