Imagine that as usual you want to pay by credit card for your purchases. You reach into your wallet and... it turns out the card's not in it. Your embarrassment, the punishing look of the cashier and the fact that you will not leave the grocery store is the least of your problems at the moment.
If you do not know what happened to your credit card it is worth to reserve it and be sure that it will not be used by unauthorized persons.
How do I block a card?
If you own a card you can block it in two ways: in person at a bank branch or by calling the bank's hotline (some banks allow you to block the card online as well).
The bank will only ask you a few questions to confirm your identity, but you may find it difficult to answer them. What's the bank gonna ask? Our customer number or...the last digits of the card that was just stolen from us. If we don't have a contract at hand, we're unlikely to answer those questions. Fortunately, some banks ask for easier, or rather unknown, data such as the mother's maiden name.
If we have lost the card along with other documents, in such a case we will not be able to immediately reserve it in the branch. In order to do so, we must first go to the police, where we report the theft of documents, and then with a "receipt" received to replace the ID or passport we can go to the bank. Did you get both your card and documents stolen? Remember to reserve all "plastics". It may happen that the bank may charge us a specific fee for cancelling a card - for information about the amount of the fee, see the card fee tariff.
How do I block a proximity card?
If you pay with a contactless card or other contactless bank products (e.g. stickers or key rings), the procedure in case of loss or theft is exactly the same as when you lose your payment card. The responsibility for transactions made with a stolen contactless card lies with the bank.
Look out! Look out!
Contactless transactions for low amounts (up to PLN 50) do not require entering a PIN and not all of them are authorized, so it may happen that a thief uses our card even though we have already reserved it. Fortunately for us, the financial responsibility for such transactions lies with the bank.
Is it worth holding off on this?
Subject to the card, it is not worth waiting too long. If the search so far has not brought any results, you should reserve your plastic as soon as possible, because the longer you delay with such a decision, the more time the thief gains to use your funds on your account. What if the card is found after it's been compromised? If it turns out that the card was not stolen from you, but simply "suspended" in your wallet, you can breathe a sigh of relief and... wait for a new card to be made, because the card stoppage cannot be reversed and returned to circulation.
Is the card somehow secured against theft?
Fortunately, the fact that our card will go into the wrong hands does not mean that the thief will clean our account.
The most dangerous are those cards, where the confirmation transactions are only a signature, because this is extremely easy to forge (PIN unless we have made it easier for the thief to recognize it, for example by holding it together with the card is much harder to guess).
If we manage to block the card before the thief wants to use it, it is of no use to him - when he wants to pay for purchases in a shop or restaurant, the seller will receive a message about suspected theft. What if a thief tries to withdraw money from an ATM? The card will then be stopped inside the device and the entire operation will not be performed.
What can I do beyond the card reservation?
Losing a card is one of the most common problems that a user of this financial product may encounter. He usually does not know what steps to take to secure his money. The only thing we can think of in such a situation is to block the card. Such a solution, apart from obvious benefits (such as blocking access to our account to unauthorized persons), also has one fundamental minus - costs associated with the creation of a new card and waiting time for it. Not everyone knows that card blocking is not the only way, some banks offer their customers blocking the card (such blocking of authorization as opposed to plastic can be revoked).
What about insurance?
Regardless of which bank you are a customer of, you can most probably use our card insurance (just in case of unauthorized use). The cost of such additional protection is only a few zlotys a month, but opinions on whether it is worth deciding on it are divided. Why such a discrepancy? First of all, because the insurance, like most contracts, contains a list of exclusions that it does not cover. Such cases include, to put it simply, situations in which the user lost the card as a result of lack of proper protection or negligence, e.g. lent it to a third party, carried the card with documents or PIN number. Remember that the bank will check the circumstances in which the card was used illegally before paying out the compensation. If he proves you guilty, you will not be covered by insurance.
In addition, even buying insurance does not give you the assurance that you will recover all the stolen money. Contracts usually contain a maximum percentage of the loss that the customer can recover in such a situation. When reporting a theft, you must also be aware that it may take weeks before your refund request can be processed and your account will be empty.
However, if you are using your card in a reasonable and contractual manner, consider taking out insurance.