LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–November 25, 2015

November 25, 2015, Written By Lynn Oldshue
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18 Most Popular Things Fraudsters Buy with Your Credit Card
When you’re scanning your credit card statement this holiday season, there are certain types of purchases you might want to keep an eye out for. In a sampling of nearly 3 million attempted fraudulent transactions over the last six months, the sales fraud detection company Forter created a list of the top items it found fraudsters purchase with other people’s credit cards. Bill Zielke, chief marketing officer at Forter, says credit card thieves make functional purchases. Pizza and Red Bull are good late-night fuel for part-time criminals who stay up in search of ways to hack into retailers’ websites. Here are the top 18 items criminals consistently attempt to purchase with stolen credit cards, which Forter expects them to aim for on Cyber Monday. Story by Priya Anand for MarketWatch.

Why Are EMV Transactions So Slow?
Stare at a clock for 15 seconds, and it can seem like an eternity. But sadly, Americans are now learning that it can take that long for their transactions to be completed using credit cards equipped with the new EMV smart chips. Since this technology is new to most of us, and is purported to be more advanced than the old magnetic stripes, many are wondering why we are being forced into the slow lane when we insert, rather than swipe, our cards. 15 seconds might not sound that bad, but if you multiply that by the number of customers standing in front of you in an otherwise fast moving line, the wasted time can really add up. Story by Jason Steele for LowCards.com.

Square’s New Credit Card Reader Rolling Out to Merchants
Square’s latest credit card readers that read chip cards and accept payments from Apple Pay are starting to be distributed, beginning with about 100 local small businesses across the United States. Square announced the release of the new $49 card readers on Nov. 23. The devices, which Square unveiled in June, can read the chip on a chip-equipped card or be tapped using near-field communication (NFC), while accepting payments through Apple Pay, Android Pay and other payment services. A free Square magnetic stripe reader is also included so merchants can still accept and swipe older credit cards. Story by Todd R. Weiss for eWeek.

France Eyes Prepaid Debit Cards in Fight Against Terror Finance
France, announcing fresh moves against terrorist financing, said on Monday it would target prepaid debit cards which it said were used in the recent Paris attacks. “We will regulate more strictly the use of prepaid cards which were used in the November 13 attacks, in order to make it harder to remain anonymous,” Finance Minister Michel Sapin told a news conference. Currently, prepaid credit cards can be recharged without identity checks so long as they don’t exceed 2,500 euros over one year. Details of stricter debit card rules, which are part of a wider set of measures to combat the financing of terror, are to be given in early 2016, the finance ministry said. Story in Yahoo News.

80% of U.S. Consumers Concerned About Online Crime
Four out of every five consumers in the United States are worried they will be the victim of an online crime, according to a Symantec report. The Norton Cybersecurity Insights Report found 62% of consumers believe it is likely their credit card information will be stolen online. This compares to just 38% that believe it is more likely for their credit cards to be stolen from their wallets. 47% of the respondents reported they had already been affected by cybercrime. Those who have been the victims of identity theft lost an average of 21 hours dealing with the aftermath and an average cost of $358. Across the 17 countries surveyed, this added up to about $150 billion. Story by Bill Hardekopf for LowCards.com.

How to Fly Free Forever: Put $170 Million on Your AmEx
Chinese billionaire Liu Yiqian, who doesn’t exactly struggle to afford a plane ticket, can now likely fly free, in first class, with his whole family, anywhere in the world, for the rest of his life. All because he bought a painting. Liu was the winning bidder for Amedeo Modigliani’s “Reclining Nude” at a Christie’s auction earlier this month–offering $170.4 million–and when the sale closes he’ll be putting it on his American Express card. Liu, a high-profile collector of Chinese antiquities and art, has used his AmEx in the past when he’s won art auctions. He put a $36 million tea cup from the Ming Dynasty on his AmEx last year, according to reports, and put other artifacts on his card earlier this year. He and his wife said they plan on using their American Express card to pay for the Modigliani. Story by Ken Sweet for the Associated Press.

All Banking to be Done on Wrists by 2020
A new study, by Juniper Research, finds the global number of smartwatch banking apps will reach 10 million by 2017, and rise to more than 100 million by 2020. The research paper notes banking on wearables is perceived, by many, as a gimmick at present. However, the research firm believes that while wearables are not suited for conducting complicated financial instructions, smartwatches will become a key device in banking transaction approval in the future. Story by Lauren Kate Rawlins for IT Web.

Credit Cards for Charity? There are Better Ways to Donate
Giving money to charity can be a great idea and might be top of mind as the holidays near, but donating with a charity credit card? No so much, experts say. It’s not that so-called affinity credit cards are evil. Charging purchases on a card with an endangered tiger or a pink breast cancer ribbon on the front might make you feel good, but just realize that you could do far better for yourself and your favorite charity. Story by Gregory Karp for the Chicago Tribune.

Skip Black Friday and Save with This Credit Card Perk
Braving Black Friday, with its long lines and competitive shoppers, is a badge of honor for some who relish hunting for great deals on holiday gifts. But if you want the deals without the hassle, consider using a credit card perk to your advantage this season. Price protection lets you get the difference between an item’s regular price and its sale price, all without camping out at the store or throwing elbows to get the last doorbuster. Here’s how it works. Story by Ben Luthi in USA Today.

LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report
Based on the 1,000+ cards in the LowCards.com Complete Credit Card Index, the average advertised APR for credit cards is 14.64 percent, identical to last week. Six months ago, the average was 14.47 percent. One year ago, the average was 14.49 percent.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of November 25, 2015. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.