Historically, a town house was the city residence of a noble or wealthy family, who would own one or more country houses in which they lived for much of the year. From the 18th century, landowners and their servants would move to a townhouse during the social season (when major balls took place).
Additionally, there are security features present on the physical card itself in order to prevent counterfeiting. For example, most modern credit cards have a watermark that will fluoresce under ultraviolet light. Most major credit cards have a hologram. A Visa card has a letter V superimposed over the regular Visa logo and a MasterCard has the letters MC across the front of the card. Older Visa cards have a bald eagle or dove across the front. In the aforementioned cases, the security features are only visible under ultraviolet light and are invisible in normal light.
The United States Secret Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and U.S. Postal Inspection Service are responsible for prosecuting criminals who engage in credit card fraud in the United States. However, they do not have the resources to pursue all criminals, and in general they only prosecute cases exceeding $5,000.
High interest and bankruptcy
Low introductory credit card rates are limited to a fixed term, usually between 6 and 12 months, after which a higher rate is charged. As all credit cards charge fees and interest, some customers become so indebted to their credit card provider that they are driven to bankruptcy. Some credit cards often levy a rate of 20 to 30 percent after a payment is missed. In other cases, a fixed charge is levied without change to the interest rate. In some cases universal default may apply: the high default rate is applied to a card in good standing by missing a payment on an unrelated account from the same provider. This can lead to a snowball effect in which the consumer is drowned by unexpectedly high interest rates. Further, most card holder agreements enable the issuer to arbitrarily raise the interest rate for any reason they see fit. First Premier Bank at one point offered a credit card with a 79.9% interest rate; however, they discontinued this card in February 2011 because of persistent defaults.
Sometimes a credit card will be secured by the equity in the borrower’s home.
See also: Stored-value card
A “prepaid credit card” is not a true credit card, since no credit is offered by the card issuer: the cardholder spends money which has been “stored” via a prior deposit by the cardholder or someone else, such as a parent or employer. However, it carries a credit-card brand (such as Discover, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or JCB) and can be used in similar ways just as though it were a credit card. Unlike debit cards, prepaid credit cards generally do not require a PIN. An exception are prepaid credit cards with an EMV chip. These cards do require a PIN if the payment is processed via Chip and PIN technology.
After purchasing the card, the cardholder loads the account with any amount of money, up to the predetermined card limit and then uses the card to make purchases the same way as a typical credit card. Prepaid cards can be issued to minors (above 13) since there is no credit line involved. The main advantage over secured credit cards (see above section) is that the cardholder is not required to come up with $500 or more to open an account. With prepaid credit cards purchasers are not charged any interest but are often charged a purchasing fee plus monthly fees after an arbitrary time period. Many other fees also usually apply to a prepaid card.
Prepaid credit cards are sometimes marketed to teenagers for shopping online without having their parents complete the transaction. Teenagers can only use funds that are available on the card which helps promote financial management to reduce the risk of debt problems later in life.
Prepaid cards can be used globally. The prepaid card is convenient for payees in developing countries like Brazil, Russia, India, and China, where international wire transfers and bank checks are time consuming, complicated and costly.
Because of the many fees that apply to obtaining and using credit-card-branded prepaid cards, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada describes them as “an expensive way to spend your own money”. The agency publishes a booklet entitled Pre-paid Cards which explains the advantages and disadvantages of this type of prepaid card.see #Further reading
A digital card is a digital cloud-hosted virtual representation of any kind of identification card or payment card, such as a credit card.
Benefits and drawbacks
Benefits to cardholder
The main benefit to the cardholder is convenience. Compared to debit cards and checks, a credit card allows small short-term loans to be quickly made to a cardholder who need not calculate a balance remaining before every transaction, provided the total charges do not exceed the maximum credit line for the card.
In the United States and Canada, a townhouse has two connotations. The older predates the automobile and denotes a house on a small footprint in a city, but because of its multiple floors (sometimes six or more), it has a large living space, often with servants’ quarters. The small footprint of the townhouse allows it to be within walking or mass-transit distance of business and industrial areas of the city yet luxurious enough for wealthy residents of the city.
Although the deposit is in the hands of the credit card issuer as security in the event of default by the consumer, the deposit will not be debited simply for missing one or two payments. Usually the deposit is only used as an offset when the account is closed, either at the request of the customer or due to severe delinquency (150 to 180 days). This means that an account which is less than 150 days delinquent will continue to accrue interest and fees, and could result in a balance which is much higher than the actual credit limit on the card. In these cases the total debt may far exceed the original deposit and the cardholder not only forfeits their deposit but is left with an additional debt.
Most of these conditions are usually described in a cardholder agreement which the cardholder signs when their account is opened.
Secured credit cards are an option to allow a person with a poor credit history or no credit history to have a credit card which might not otherwise be available. They are often offered as a means of rebuilding one’s credit. Fees and service charges for secured credit cards often exceed those charged for ordinary non-secured credit cards. For people in certain situations, (for example, after charging off on other credit cards, or people with a long history of delinquency on various forms of debt), secured cards are almost always more expensive than unsecured credit cards.
In the United Kingdom most townhouses were terraced (see Terraced houses in the United Kingdom). Only a small minority of them, generally the largest, were detached, but even aristocrats whose country houses had grounds of hundreds or thousands of acres often lived in terraced houses in town. For example, the Duke of Norfolk owned Arundel Castle in the country, while his London house, Norfolk House, was a terraced house in St James’s Square over 100 feet (30 meters) wide.
Secured credit cards
A secured credit card is a type of credit card secured by a deposit account owned by the cardholder. Typically, the cardholder must deposit between 100% and 200% of the total amount of credit desired. Thus if the cardholder puts down $1,000, they will be given credit in the range of $500–1,000. In some cases, credit card issuers will offer incentives even on their secured card portfolios. In these cases, the deposit required may be significantly less than the required credit limit, and can be as low as 10% of the desired credit limit. This deposit is held in a special savings account. Credit card issuers offer this because they have noticed that delinquencies were notably reduced when the customer perceives something to lose if the balance is not repaid.
The cardholder of a secured credit card is still expected to make regular payments, as with a regular credit card, but should they default on a payment, the card issuer has the option of recovering the cost of the purchases paid to the merchants out of the deposit. The advantage of the secured card for an individual with negative or no credit history is that most companies report regularly to the major credit bureaus. This allows building a positive credit history.
Complex fee structures in the credit card industry limit customers’ ability to comparison shop, help ensure that the industry is not price-competitive and help maximize industry profits.
Research shows that a substantial fraction of consumers (about 40 percent) choose a sub-optimal credit card agreement, with some incurring hundreds of dollars of avoidable interest costs.
Business credit cards are specialized credit cards issued in the name of a registered business, and typically they can only be used for business purposes. Their use has grown in recent decades. In 1998, for instance, 37% of small businesses reported using a business credit card; by 2009, this number had grown to 64%.
Business credit cards offer a number of features specific to businesses. They frequently offer special rewards in areas such as shipping, office supplies, travel, and business technology. Most issuers use the applicant’s personal credit score when evaluating these applications. In addition, income from a variety of sources may be used to qualify, which means these cards may be available to businesses that are newly established. In addition, most major issuers of these cards do not report account activity to the owner’s personal credit unless there is a default. This may have the effect of protecting the owner’s personal credit from the activity of the business.
Business credit cards are offered by almost all major card issuers—like American Express, Visa, and MasterCard in addition to local banks and credit unions. Charge cards for businesses, however, are currently only offered by American Express.
Controlled charge numbers (also known as digital credit score cards or disposable credit cards) are another alternative for protective towards credit card fraud in which presentation of a bodily card isn’t required, as in cellphone and on line purchasing. These are one-time use numbers that function as a price card and are connected to the person’s real account, but do now not reveal info, and can not be used for subsequent unauthorised transactions. They may be valid for a surprisingly short time, and restricted to the real amount of the acquisition or a restrict set by means of the user. Their use can be limited to at least one service provider. If the wide variety given to the service provider is compromised, it will be rejected if an attempt is made to use it a 2nd time.
A similar machine of controls can be used on bodily cards. Technology gives the option for banks to assist many other controls too that may be became on and rancid and sundry by way of the credit score card owner in actual time as situations trade (i.E., they can change temporal, numerical, geographical and many other parameters on their number one and subsidiary playing cards). Apart from the plain advantages of such controls: from a safety attitude which means that a consumer may have a Chip and PIN card secured for the actual global, and restrained to be used in the home usa. In this eventuality a thief stealing the info might be prevented from the use of these remote places in non chip and pin EMV international locations. Similarly the real card may be constrained from use on-line so that stolen information might be declined if this tried. Then whilst card users keep on line they could use virtual account numbers. In each instances an alert gadget can be built in notifying a consumer that a fraudulent strive has been made which breaches their parameters, and may offer records on this in actual time. This is the most appropriate approach of security for credit playing cards, as it gives very high tiers of safety, manage and consciousness inside the actual and digital world.
A townhouse, or town house as used in North America, Asia, Australia, South Africa and parts of Europe, is a type of terraced housing. A modern town house is often one with a small footprint on multiple floors. The term originally referred in British usage to the city residence (normally in London) of someone whose main or largest residence was a country house.
The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is the security general issued through the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). This information security wellknown is used by acquiring banks to impose cardholder records security features upon their traders.
The aim of the credit card companies isn’t always to eliminate fraud, but to “reduce it to workable tiers”. This implies that fraud prevention measures might be used simplest if their price are lower than the ability gains from fraud reduction, whereas excessive-fee low-go back measures will not be used – as would be expected from businesses whose aim is income maximisation.
Internet fraud can be through claiming a chargeback which is not justified (“friendly fraud”), or carried out by using the usage of credit card statistics which may be stolen in many approaches, the most effective being copying records from outlets, either online or offline. Despite efforts to enhance security for far off purchases the use of credit cards, safety breaches are usually the result of bad practice by way of traders. For instance, a website that adequately makes use of SSL to encrypt card facts from a purchaser may additionally then electronic mail the data, unencrypted, from the webserver to the service provider; or the merchant may save unencrypted information in a manner that allows them to be accessed over the Internet or by way of a rogue worker; unencrypted card information are constantly a safety chance. Even encryption statistics can be cracked.
Credit card companies commonly guarantee the merchant will be paid on valid transactions no matter whether the consumer pays their credit score card bill. Most banking offerings have their own credit card offerings that deal with fraud cases and reveal for any viable try at fraud. Employees which might be specialized in doing fraud tracking and investigation are often positioned in Risk Management, Fraud and Authorization, or Cards and Unsecured Business. Fraud tracking emphasizes minimizing fraud losses at the same time as making an try to song down those accountable and incorporate the scenario. Credit card fraud is a primary white collar crime that has been round for plenty decades, in spite of the appearance of the chip based totally card (EMV) that turned into positioned into exercise in some nations to save you cases which includes those. Even with the implementation of such measures, credit card fraud continues to be a hassle.
Credit card security is predicated on the physical safety of the plastic card as well as the privateness of the credit card quantity. Therefore, every time a person apart from the card proprietor has access to the cardboard or its variety, safety is probably compromised. Once, merchants would often receive credit card numbers without additional verification for mail order purchases. It’s now not unusual practice to handiest deliver to confirmed addresses as a safety measure to minimise fraudulent purchases. Some traders will receive a credit score card wide variety for in-store purchases, whereupon get entry to to the number permits smooth fraud, but many require the card itself to be present, and require a signature. A misplaced or stolen card can be cancelled, and if this is finished quick, will significantly restriction the fraud that could take region on this manner. European banks can require a cardholder’s security PIN be entered for in-character purchases with the cardboard.
Many credit card clients get hold of rewards, inclusive of frequent flyer factors, gift certificate, or coins again as an incentive to use the card. Rewards are usually tied to purchasing an object or service on the cardboard, which may or won’t consist of stability transfers, cash advances, or other unique uses. Depending at the kind of card, rewards will usually value the issuer between zero.25% and 2.0% of the unfold. Networks consisting of Visa or MasterCard have elevated their charges to allow issuers to fund their rewards system. Some issuers discourage redemption by means of forcing the cardholder to call customer support for rewards. On their servicing internet site, redeeming awards is usually a function that is thoroughly hidden by using the issuers. With a fractured and competitive surroundings, rewards points reduce dramatically into an issuer’s bottom line, and rewards points and related incentives have to be carefully controlled to ensure a profitable portfolio. Unlike unused gift playing cards, in whose case the breakage in positive US states is going to the nation’s treasury, unredeemed credit score card points are retained via the provider.
In relative numbers the values misplaced in financial institution card fraud are minor, calculated in 2006 at 7 cents in step with a hundred dollars worth of transactions (7 foundation points). In 2004, in the UK, the cost of fraud became over £500 million. When a card is stolen, or an unauthorized reproduction made, maximum card issuers will refund some or all of the charges that the consumer has obtained for matters they did now not purchase. These refunds will, in a few instances, be at the cost of the service provider, specially in mail order instances wherein the service provider cannot claim sight of the cardboard. In several international locations, traders will lose the money if no ID card became asked for, therefore merchants normally require ID card in those nations