Fraud Lessons Learned at the Movies

As a fan of the movies, I believe that there are some great life lessons to take away from the cinema. For instance, in “Catch Me If You Can,” a biographical crime film, the main character Frank Abagnale, Jr. is a former fraudster portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio.

Today, Frank is a fraud expert who advises people about how to not become a victim of fraud. He recently appeared on CNBC and proudly proclaimed that he doesn’t own a debit card. In fact, Frank noted that he never allowed his children to possess one. He feels that “a debit card is certainly and truly the worst financial tool ever given to the American consumer.” Why? The reason is simple: there is a personal liability issue associated with using a debt card. Use a credit card instead. A compromised debit card effectively equates to the victim’s account being compromised, while a credit card company wipes out personal liability in the case of stolen identification.

Some other takeaways:

  • A credit card allows a person to build a reputable credit score, which may come in handy in the future when there are large purchases to make.
  • On social media never tell anyone your place of birth or date of birth. While a credit card can be replaced, you cannot change these two pieces of personal information. And, of course, never disclose your social security number.
  • Keep check writing to a minimum and be sure to examine bank statements frequently.

So, be vigilant against scammers so you can go to the movies and not be taken to the cleaners.

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