There are different ways a fraudster might gain control of your credit card. In many cases, the person who misuses a credit card account is somebody the credit card holder does not know. Still, your card might be at risk of theft from somebody that you already know and perhaps even trust.

When somebody is the victim of fraud because an acquaintance of the victim had committed the fraud, familiar fraud has taken place. As U.S. News and World Report points out, while a person will commonly experience fraud from a stranger, many fraud cases still happen because of familiar fraud. This applies to credit card theft as well.

Familiar fraud and credit card fraud

Credit card scammers use a variety of techniques to acquire credit card numbers, such as a skimmer, which scammers use on ATM machines and gas pump readers. However, people who are the victim of familiar fraud often freely give their credit card information to someone in their social circle, like a friend or a family member.

You likely have complete trust in the person you give your information to. Still, it is a good idea to avoid handing out credit card information even to people you trust unless it is absolutely necessary. People who become victims of familiar fraud often had no idea that the perpetrators were capable of such acts.

Protecting yourself in case of fraud charges

It may benefit you to be cautious if you have a friend or family member who entrusts you with their credit card information. If your acquaintance notices unexplained expenses on his or her account, suspicion may fall on you even if you have done nothing wrong. Such suspicion may even result in criminal charges. In such an event, you may need legal help to protect your rights and understand the nature of the charges against you.