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(Precious) Words of Wisdom : "Never spend your money before you have earned it." ~ Thomas Jefferson

Limited damage on misuse of Credit, Debit or ATM Cards

Numerous people have been innocent victims of fraudulent use of their Credit Cards, Debit Cards or ATM Cards and lost money running into lakhs. Phising, Vhishing, Smishing, Skimming, Hacking are among the many techniques employed by hi-tech thieves. 

Bank customers can now, however, breathe a sigh of relief. 

As per BCSBI's [Banking Codes and Standards Board of India] latest 'Code of Bank's Commitment to Customers 2014', liability of the customers in such instances has been capped.

The Code states that 
"You will be liable to pay not more than Rs.10,000 (Rupees Ten Thousand only) for any loss that occurs before you notify us. However, this limit will not apply if:
i.   you have acted fraudulently or negligently; or
ii.  you have contributed to the unauthorized use of your Card."

It also specifies that
"Once you have advised us that your card has been lost or stolen, or your PIN or password disclosed, you will not be responsible for any unauthorized use of your card after that time. This protection will not apply if you have acted fraudulently or negligently."

Moreover, in cases of disputed transaction(s), it will be the bank's responsibility to prove that it was you who authorized the same.

In other words, bank is willing to take all the risks and responsibilities of any misuse, PROVIDED you have been extremely cautious and diligent in protecting your Cards, PINs and Passwords. This is logical too. After all, it is your money which is at risk, not the bank's. Therefore, it is but natural that you must take all reasonable steps to protect it. You must be aware of — and adhere to — the relevant guidelines issued by the banks from time to time.

It goes without saying that any loss of cards or passwords must be promptly notified to the banks. In addition, you must not delay in updating the bank about any changes in your email ID, mobile number and / or the address. 

Banks are doing their best to ensure that your money is safe [SMS and email alerts, mandatory PINs, cameras and guards at ATMs, etc.]. Therefore, it is obligatory that you too must not do anything that makes it easy for the fraudsters to loot you.

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