NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Credit Card Fraud Down, Visa Reports

February 23, 2000

Fraudulent use of its credit cards has declined annually since 1992, according to Visa. Officials at the company credit anti-fraud computer programs and new procedures which have been put in place.

  • The nation's largest credit card system reports a fraud rate for 1999 of just 6 cents per $100 worth of transactions -- which compares to 18 cents per $100 in 1992.
  • Computer programs have been developed to flag questionable purchases while they are in progress -- which rely on identifying geographical deviations or variances in the amount of type of purchases from customers standard patterns.
  • Visa is in the process of incorporating a code on the back of its cards that will verify a customer has physical possession of a card when charging by phone, mail or Internet.
  • Card holders are asked to give the card's billing address in many Internet transactions.

While MasterCard has not released its 1999 fraud statistics, it has reported that fraud in 1998 was well below historic highs.

Source: Thomas A. Fogarty, "Credit Card Fraud Takes a Fall," USA Today, February 23, 2000.


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