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Learn How To Handle Chase® Debit Card Fraud

Ashley Ferraro, Product
Nov 7, 2023
 Min Read
Protect Your Payments With Virtual Cards

In the first half of 2023, the Federal Trade Commission Sentinel Network reported over 38,000 cases in the U.S. where a debit card was fraudulently used, resulting in a total loss of over $106 million for consumers. 

While major banks such as Chase® employ various security measures to protect users’ financial data, there’s always a risk of card details being obtained by bad actors that hack the businesses you shop at, especially with the popularity of online shopping. If someone used your Chase debit card fraudulently, you should learn how to mitigate the consequences.

This article will explain what steps to take in case of Chase debit card fraud and which types of fraud to look out for in the future. You will also discover alternative payment methods that could help with Chase debit card fraud prevention.

What To Do When Suspecting Chase Debit Card Fraud

If you suspect your Chase debit card was used fraudulently, it is crucial to act quickly. Chase advises you to do the following[1]:

  1. Check the details of the suspicious charge.
  2. Lock your debit card and report fraud.
  3. Activate your new debit card and update your billing information.

Check the Details of the Suspicious Charge

The first step you should take is to sign in to your Chase account and find the charge you suspect was made without your permission. You should open the link next to the displayed amount and check the details of the transaction, such as at what merchant the purchase was made and whether it was an online or in-person transaction. Keep in mind that you may not be able to see details for pending charges.

If you see a charge you recognize as yours, but the details don’t seem correct—such as being charged more than once or for a subscription you canceled, it is probably a charge error[1]. In this case, you can report the issue as such and dispute the charge.

Before you report any charge as fraudulent, you should also check whether:

  • The charge wasn't made by an authorized account holder
  • You haven't let anyone else use your card
  • The transaction details are unfamiliar, even while keeping in mind that some merchants use a different name or address for billing purposes

If you perform all of the steps above and determine the charge was definitely fraudulent, you should move on to the following step.

A photo of a Chase bank branch
Source: Frugal Flyer

Lock Your Debit Card and Report the Fraud 

As soon as you confirm fraud on your Chase debit card, you should lock the card. It is important to note that locking your debit card will block new purchases but not recurring transactions.

The next step after locking your debit card is to sign into your Chase account and follow the necessary steps for reporting fraud. Besides filing a debit card fraud report online, you can also reach out to Chase Customer Support Service at 1-800-978-8664 to report the issue or ask any questions concerning unauthorized transactions made with your Chase debit card. Remember to update your phone number if necessary in case the bank needs to contact you quickly.

Once you file a Chase Debit Card fraud claim, your card will be deactivated for your protection, and you will be issued a new one—the replacement card will likely arrive within 3–5 business days.

Activate Your New Debit Card and Update Your Billing Information

When your replacement card arrives, you will first have to activate it. You can do so on Chase’s website, within the Chase Mobile app, or by calling the number on the back of your new debit card or using the card at any Chase ATM. Chase further recommends you take the necessary security measures to prevent unauthorized access to your bank account, including:

Another crucial step you should take after receiving a replacement debit card from Chase is to update your billing information for recurring transactions. Failing to do so can result in missed payments, which can lead to late payment penalties. You can typically update your billing details by navigating to the billing sections in your linked accounts, removing the stolen debit card data, and entering the replacement card details into the designated fields.

Federal Law Protection in Case of Chase Debit Card Fraud

If you were a victim of debit card fraud, you should know that federal law generally limits your responsibility for unauthorized charges on your debit card, provided you report the issue promptly. 

The table below presents the consumer liability details indicated by the Electronic Funds Transfer Act, a law that governs debit card fraud:

Reporting Time Maximum Liability
2 days $50
Between 2 and 60 days $500
After 60 days Potentially unlimited

You should know that Chase has a zero liability policy, which means that you won’t be held responsible for any unauthorized transactions made with your Chase payment card or account information. However, you will still be required to go through the arduous process of reporting debit card fraud and updating your billing information.

The best solution would be to avoid becoming a victim of debit card fraud in the first place, and you can achieve this by knowing how to recognize fraud attempts and employing security measures to protect your debit card data from theft.

Methods of Stealing Your Debit Card Data You Should Be Aware Of

Even though physical card theft is common, fraudsters today don’t need to have physical access to your debit card to steal and misuse it. They can perform card-not-present fraud and obtain sensitive information you provide during transactions conducted online and over the phone. CNP fraud has grown more prevalent over the past couple of years, with Insider Intelligence predicting that it will make up 74.0% of fraud by 2024.

Below are some of the methods fraudsters frequently use to access users’ debit card information:

Phishing Phishing involves posing as a trusted and reliable source, such as a bank or other financial institution, and sending emails and texts designed to manipulate the target into disclosing sensitive information.
Hacking a Public Wi-Fi Network Public Wi-Fi networks are typically unsecured, and hackers may take advantage of this lack of security to hijack data—including debit card numbers—being transmitted between a device and a router.
Data Breaches Hackers often take advantage of vulnerabilities in merchants’ security systems to access their servers and steal users’ debit card data.

Security Measures To Employ Against Debit Card Fraud

The table below shows essential steps to take to protect yourself against debit card fraud:

Security Measure How It Works
Avoid public Wi-Fi networks Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks and only make online payments when you’re connected to secure and private Wi-Fi.
Look out for the signs of phishing

You should never provide personal information or perform any action until you establish the trustworthiness of the person or organization requesting it.

Phishing emails and messages can typically be recognized by the following signs:

  • A slightly different email address/phone number than the legitimate source’s

  • Urgent tone

  • Grammar and spelling errors

  • Impersonal greetings, such as “Dear Sir/Madam”

Use virtual cards

Virtual cards conceal your payment card data during online transactions with randomly generated numbers, protecting it from potential hackers.

Chase Bank doesn’t offer virtual cards, but independent virtual card providers, such as Privacy, provide robust security along with customization options and control features for a safe and seamless online shopping experience.
A close-up of a woman’s hands typing on a phone
Source: Paul Hanaoka

Shield Your Debit Card Data With Privacy Virtual Cards

A Privacy Virtual Card has a unique 16-digit number with a CVV and expiration date that you can connect to your debit card or bank account when shopping online. Even if hackers access a merchant’s server, they will only be able to see your virtual card number, while your real financial data will remain protected.

You can generate two types of Privacy Virtual Cards:

Card Type Description How It Protects You
Merchant-Locked Cards A Merchant-Locked Card “locks” to the first merchant you purchase at. It can be used multiple times at one particular merchant. A potential hacker won’t be able to misuse the card credentials on another website.
Single-Use Cards Single-Use Cards close minutes after the first transaction is completed. It’s ideal for purchases on unfamiliar websites.  After the card closes, the credentials cannot be used for potential fraudulent activity.

Privacy is a BBB®-accredited business committed to maintaining high customer service standards. The company is PCI-DSS-compliant and also follows OWASP best practices, employing sophisticated security measures to protect sensitive customer information.

A woman sitting in front of a laptop and monitoring her account activity on her iPhone

Other Benefits of Privacy Virtual Cards

Besides protecting your card and bank data, Privacy provides the following features to ensure seamless online transactions:

  • Customizable spending limits—You can set per-card, monthly, or annual spending limits on each Privacy Card to prevent overcharging attempts from merchants and remain in control of your budget.
  • Browser extension for fast checkouts—Privacy browser extension, available for Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and Safari, enables fast and seamless checkout by autofilling your virtual card numbers in the checkout fields. iPhone and iPad users can also leverage quick checkouts with the Safari for iOS extension.
  • Pausing/unpausing and closing virtual cards—You can close/pause your virtual card without affecting your actual debit card and bank account. This feature is especially convenient if you want to prevent unwarranted charges from a subscription service—you can pause or close your virtual card, and Privacy will block all further charge attempts.
  • Real-time account monitoring—If you want to create and manage your virtual cards on the go, install Privacy’s Android or iOS app. Every time your card is used or declined, Privacy will send you an in-app push notification and email, so you can track your account activity in real time.

How To Sign Up for a Privacy Virtual Card

A shot of a person sitting at the table and using a laptop
Source: Christin Hume

Here’s how to sign up for a Privacy account:

  1. Access the signup page
  2. Enter the information required to verify your identity
  3. Add a funding source, such as your debit card or bank account
  4. Request and generate a Privacy Virtual Card

Privacy’s Personal plan is free for domestic purchases
and offers 12 virtual cards a month, access to the browser extension and mobile app, and all the card controls mentioned above. If your needs grow, you can opt for one of the paid plans and create up to 60 virtual cards a month, plus enjoy benefits such as:

  • 1% cashback on eligible purchases (totaling up to $4,500 a month)
  • No fees on foreign transactions
  • Priority support

U.S. residents over 18 years old with a checking account at a U.S. bank or credit union are eligible to request a Privacy Virtual Card. The cards are accepted by most local or global vendors that accept U.S. credit or debit card payments.


[1] Chase., sourced October 2023

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