Almost 7 in 10 Have Received a False Fraud Alert

College Grads, Affluent Households Most Likely to Receive Fraud Alerts

May 20, 2015, 08:30 ET from

AUSTIN, Texas, May 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Approximately seven in 10 Americans (68%) who have received a fraudulent activity alert from their credit or debit card issuer have received at least one alert in error, according to a new report. More than half (53%) said all or most of the blocked charges were legitimate purchases that were wrongly flagged by the issuer.

The following groups are more likely than average to have received a fraud alert:

  • 54% of college graduates (versus just 24% of those with no more than a high school education)
  • 53% of people with annual household income of $75,000 or greater (compared with 23% of people with annual household income under $30,000)
  • 48% of Republicans (against 36% of Democrats)
  • 46% of whites (almost double the 25% of non-whites)

"Given all of the high-profile data breaches that have occurred over the past few years, card issuers are keeping a very close eye on potentially fraudulent transactions," said Matt Schulz,'s senior industry analyst. "Most consumers we have spoken with seem to be okay with this trend, but people can help avoid errant fraud alerts by notifying their card issuers before traveling or making other unusual purchases."

The most common way to tell the bank of your plans is to call the 800-number on the back of your credit card. However, all but one of the biggest card issuers now offer online notification tools, which invite consumers to share their plans without picking up the phone.

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Princeton Survey Research Associates International obtained telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults living in the continental U.S. Interviews were conducted by landline (500) and cell phone (500, including 285 without a landline phone) in English and Spanish by Princeton Data Source from April 30-May 3, 2015. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is plus or minus 3.6 percentage points.

About, named a "Best Site for Managing Your Credit" by MSN Money, is a leading online credit card marketplace, bringing consumers and credit card issuers together. At its free website, consumers can compare hundreds of credit card offers from America's leading issuers and banks and apply securely, online. is also a destination site for consumers wanting to learn more about credit cards. Offering advice, news, features, statistics and tools, helps consumers make smart choices about credit cards. In 2014, over 22 million unique visitors used to find the right credit card to suit their needs.

For More Information:
Kayleen Yates
Senior Director, Corporate Communications