Here’s an extra layer of security for your debit card

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If there’s one thing Oregonians know about, it’s layering. Going hiking? Grab an extra jacket just in case. Camping? Pile those layers on.

But layering isn’t just a way to accommodate our ever-changing weather. It’s also a crucial tactic for securing your debit card against fraud. The more layers of protection you have between you and fraudsters, the safer you are. That’s why we’re constantly looking for new ways to provide extra security where you need it most.

Take card-not-present fraud, for example. That’s when someone uses your debit card info to make purchases online or over the phone. Since they don’t have to show the card in person, it’s much easier than walking into a store and buying something with a stolen card. Now that debit cards come with EMV chips, in-person fraud is much harder to pull off—a fact that’s driving many identity thieves to buy online instead.

Card-not-present fraud rose 40 percent last year, and it’s a growing concern for consumers. For OCCU members, however, it’s about to become less of an issue. Starting May 22, all of our members’ debit cards will automatically include eGuard, an enhanced security tool that provides an extra layer of defense against card-not-present fraud.

Here’s what you need to know about it:

What does eGuard do?

eGuard protects your debit card against unauthorized online transactions by flagging suspicious purchases. If something doesn’t seem on the up-and-up, you will be prompted on your screen to request a one-time passcode to be sent to you via text message. Once you receive the code you will enter it in at checkout to complete your purchase. If it is an identity thief, the transaction won’t go through. Plus you’ll get an early warning that someone’s abusing your debit card info.

How does it work?

When someone uses your debit card number to make a dubious online purchase at a participating store, eGuard will ask you to confirm your identity with a one-time passcode. You’ll receive the passcode in a text from the short code 732-873. If you get a text about a transaction you didn’t make, call us immediately to stop the identity thief in their tracks.

Which of my transactions are protected?

eGuard protection kicks in whenever your debit card number is used to shop online at a participating store. It only works if a merchant chooses to process transactions through eGuard. Although many retailers still haven’t opted in, the rise in card-not-present fraud is likely to propel a huge jump in participation.

Will I have to authenticate every purchase?

The vast majority of your online transactions will go through without interruption. eGuard uses a sophisticated risk-based fraud model to identify suspicious activity, so your regular purchases aren’t likely to trigger any red flags. Most of the time you won’t even know it’s there.

How do I enroll?

All of our members will be automatically enrolled in eGuard for free, so you don’t have to lift a finger. Your protection will kick in starting May 22. It helps if we have your wireless phone number on file to make sure your authentication texts go through. If not, eGuard will ask knowledge-based questions such as your mother’s maiden name, date of birth or zip code during the checkout process.

The best way to avoid debit card fraud is to wrap yourself in multiple layers of security. Our enhanced eGuard protection makes e-commerce safer—without slowing down your online shopping.