All About Debit Cards
What Is a Debit Card?
With a debit card, you can shop at many merchant locations without having to carry cash or remember your checkbook. You can use your Provident Credit Union debit card at any merchant that accepts Visa (including for Web purchases), and the purchase amount will be deducted directly from your checking account.
Debit cards are "pay now" products that quickly access (i.e. "debit") money from your checking account, as if you were taking out cash. So, for your debit card to work, you must already have the money in your account to cover the transaction.
This differs from credit cards which are "pay later" products that draw from a credit line--money made available by your card issuer--and give you a grace period to pay. With a credit card, if you do not pay in full by the end of this period, you are charged interest.
The Benefits of a Debit Card
When choosing a PIN (Personal Identification Number) for the card's ATM and POS features, choose a number that a smart thief couldn't figure out. Avoid obvious choices, such as your address, phone number, or birth date. Then keep your PIN private. Memorize it. Don't write it down and never tell it to anyone. To minimize your risk, use different PINs for other cards, home banking, voice mail, combination locks, other online services, etc. If one of your PINs is ever compromised, you won't want all other aspects of your life to become vulnerable at the same time.
Know your current account balance. Don't forget about checks that have not yet cleared your account. If you're not sure where you stand, go online (with "Account Manager" online banking) or use "Touch Tone Teller" (Provident's automated telephone service) to check your balance and recent transactions.
Always take sales receipts and carbons. They may contain valuable information a thief could use to make mail, phone, or Web purchases on your account.
Record your transactions in your check register as soon as possible. Then store your receipts safely in a secure place (i.e., not your wallet or purse) in case you need them later.
If your Provident Credit Union debit card is lost or stolen, contact Provident at (800) 449-7728 immediately. This reduces your liability to zero if fraud losses occur after you've contacted us.
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For electronic payments: More InfoThis credit union is federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). Article: Provident... One of the Strongest Credit Unions in the Country © 2013 Provident Credit Union