Credit Card details over mail

Feb 7th, 2007, 01:54 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2007
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Credit Card details over mail

Hi,
We are booking hotel rooms in italy on our own directly - and most of them are asking us to furnish our credit card details over the mail - which they will not charge now but hold as a guarantee.
is it safe to do so? i ve been asking them to send some secure site where i can furnish the details, but all of them are assuring me that it is a done thing to send details over mail.
what should i do??
please advise.
sasha_g is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 02:03 AM
  #2  
 
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No it is not okay to send credit card numbers via unecrypted email. You should fax them the information instead.
MorganB is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 02:22 AM
  #3  
 
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I never ever send credit card details through the e-mail. Some people send several e-mails with just a few numbers in each one, but I don't like that idea either. I also always deal directly with the hotels that I was to book and after I have decided to confirm my reservation, I ask for their fax number and send them all my credit card and reservation details.
Flame123 is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 03:04 AM
  #4  
 
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I have sent my CC details in e-mail to many hotels and have never had a problem; perhaps I have been lucky.

If you are worried that someone along the way is going to "intercept" your e-mail then don't use it to send the CC details.

If you are worried about someone on the other end using your CC details for illegal purposes then faxing isn't any safer than e-mail.


How do people intercept e-mails, anyway? Perhaps Robespierre can help with this.
Dukey is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 03:05 AM
  #5  
 
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email is fine. Just split your number into two separate emails. That's no less secure than having a paper fax sitting around on a desk or in a trash can in a hotel for whomever to see. Or, for that matter, giving your credit card to a waiter and having them disappear with it for 20 minutes.

Even if something happens, your liability is limited to $50 which most credit card companies will waive as long as you inform them immediately if you find your card is misused.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 03:16 AM
  #6  
ira
 
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Hi S,

ditto, rufus.

How many times have you given your CC to a waiter, who walks away with it?

That is less safe than sending the info in 2 emails.

ira is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 05:50 AM
  #7  
 
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Here's my standard reply:
While I'm not thrilled to do this, I have in the past. What I do is to write out the numbers in the local language over a number of lines, which I hope foils most of the automated CC number skimming programs/filters. Example
eins-zwei-drei-vier
funf-sechs-seiben-acht
neun-null-eins-zwei
drei-vier-funf-sechs

Paul
sanschag is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 06:22 AM
  #8  
 
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It is perfectly safe to "transmit" cc numbers over the internet. The risk occurs after the cc numbers have been received and are sitting in someones server or inbox. The internet cannot be "tapped" like a phone line. In that regard, a fax is less secure during transmission than the internet. You have to have some trust that the numbers are handled properly at the receiving end.
fmpden is online now  
Feb 7th, 2007, 07:21 AM
  #9  
 
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I agree with Rufus's suggestion about splitting the card numbers over 2 emails. I do exactly that and have never had a problem.

There are many opporunities for your cc# to be stolen or abused; email is no more dangerous than any other.
kfusto is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 07:41 AM
  #10  
 
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Listen up.

If a criminal has tapped your IP address - or more likely, the hotel's (and it can be done anywhere in the network there's a router, of which there are thousands), separating your number into pieces won't help. Because his IP trap software can catch all the pieces and reassemble them.

Words substituted for digits is probably about the second thing a criminal will look for.

Your Cardholder Agreement protects you from fraudulent use of your numbers. Sleep well.
Robespierre is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 07:53 AM
  #11  
 
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I've sent mine over e-mail for hotels and just check my statement everyday to make sure nothing funny is on it. Hey, who bought all that stuff from QVC? They must have stolen my credit card!!!!
SharonG is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 07:58 AM
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"They must have stolen my credit card!!!!"

That's what you get for eating at The Olive Garden.
Robespierre is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 08:20 AM
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Olive Garden? Moi????? Never!!!! I'm a transplanted New Yorker and cannot get over the folks here in Nashville that consistently vote for the Olive Garden as their favorite Italian restaurant. Yuck. I'd rather eat a slice of pizza on the old Staten Island ferry than that stuff.
SharonG is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 08:34 AM
  #14  
 
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I've paid for hotels and apartments loads of times by credit card with email and never had a problem, maybe I was just lucky, but I have insurance with my credit card anyway...
johnnycoyote is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 08:51 AM
  #15  
 
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I've had my credit card number intercepted a few times - it is a bit of a hassle, but nothing terrible. Each time the credit card company alerted me to odd activity, I confirmed that I had not made the charges, and was issued a new card with a new number. I was not liable for any charges and the only thing I actually had to do was go online and change my CC number for any automatic things like TiVo that are charged to my card. The only time it was a particular hassle was when it happened during the Christmas season and I had to wait 3 days for my card to come in the mail. It didn't stop me from shopping, but I did miss out on accruing some miles on that card - LOL.

In talking with the people at the bank and doing my own research, the theft of my number could have happened in a restaurant, online, or just about any time. My mother-in-law recently had some fraudulent activity on a card and she has never even BEEN on a computer - LOL.
J_Correa is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 10:17 AM
  #16  
ira
 
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>The internet cannot be "tapped" like a phone line.<

Unfortunately, that is not true.

A friend who is in the business gave me a quick review of how he was able to get my AMEX credit card number in under 10 min.

However, he was specifically targeting me, which is quite different from having a stranger randomly access your email with CC info.

ira is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 10:50 AM
  #17  
 
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However, that statement is still true. The explaination as to why is too length for this forum. If he got your number he obtained it from an unsecured server where it was stored (or broke in) or he got it out of your computer. He did not obtain the number while the e-mail was being transmitted. And the earlier comment about routers was only partially accurate. There is always risk to electronic transactions. But the risk of forwarding a credit card number to confirm a reservation is very low. Done it for years and have purchased from sites that technically were not secure. That is an over stated risk or concern. If you are that concerned you should never hand your credit card to anyone.
fmpden is online now  
Feb 7th, 2007, 11:01 AM
  #18  
 
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Kindly point out the inaccurate part:

"...it can be done anywhere in the network there's a router, of which there are thousands..."
Robespierre is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 11:14 AM
  #19  
 
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I have sent my cc details by email to hotels. I do have a separate cc that I use ONLY for email, phone and internet orders. This isn't really any safer than using my other cc, but it has a lower limit, and less charges on it each month, so it is easier to keep track of.
saltymuffin is offline  
Feb 7th, 2007, 01:22 PM
  #20  
 
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Simple -- not all of the data packets go through the same router at the same time.
fmpden is online now  

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