Watch Those Charges To Make Sure They"re Yours

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At the end of the month when your credit card statement comes in, what do you do with it? I am going to guess you likely look at the balance due, and the minimum payment, then write your check and send it off. Right? WRONG! You need to be looking more closely at that statement to make sure that there are no charges on it that you didn't make. Think that rarely happens and only to irresponsible people? Think again.

You may know actor James Woods from a number of the movies he has been in, most recently starring as a lawyer in the TV show Shark. He is the kind of person that takes a look at the charges on his credit card at the end of the month and noticed that there were thousands of dollars in charges that he had not put on the card. Among the items purchased were a set of very pricey VIP concert tickets.

Doing a little home detective work, Woods decided to try to figure out who was responsible for the charges. He called the concert venue and told them he had not gotten the tickets and wanted to confirm the name and address they sent them to.

Turns out the address was right beside a restaurant where he often went, and the person who had ordered the tickets was one of the waiters at that restaurant. Obviously, one night when he was having dinner the waiter took his card, to pay the bill, and while he was at it copied the charge information to use on his own later.

This shows this kind of thing can happen to anyone. So, you need to be keeping a close eye on your statement every month. Go over each individual charge and make sure they are all ones that you have charged. If you are not sure what a charge is, call the company for clarification.

It is important to catch these types of charges quickly. The faster they are caught, the faster you can stop the charging. Additionally, many credit card companies will begin to hold you responsible if you don't notice the problem early on.

Another option is to make sure you have a credit card with protection benefits. Many credit cards on the market come with advanced protection benefits that will keep a close eye on your card and quickly catch any problem charges. You will also be protected from being responsible for anything charged on your card.
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