Credit cards Updated:
Credit card holders have been advised to take extra care in order to ensure their details are protected.
Fraud protection service Cifas has warned people not to let cards out of their sight, particularly as Christmas approaches.
The advice comes following Symantec research into the underground internet economy, which found that credit card and bank account details on sale could be worth as much as $5 billion (£3.3 billion).
Communications manager at Cifas Richard Hurley explained that safety tips become ever more relevant at this time of year.
"The extremes of Christmas jollity and stress make us even more vulnerable when making last minute purchases on the high street, shopping online, celebrating or just in our day to day lives," he said.
Suggested precautions include shielding pin numbers from people queuing behind and locking away personal documents, as well as carefully checking bank statements to ensure fraudulent transactions are spotted.
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