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The Credit Card Issuers That Keep You Safe


So much for a blasé data breach. Last month’s breach of Citigroup credit card numbers didn’t include the cards’ expiration dates and securities codes, which should have prevented the hackers from using the cards. Even so, this week Citi announced that some 3,400 of those credit cards (about 1% of the total compromised) were fraudulently used to the tune of $2.7 million.

None of the cardholders are held responsible for those charges, says a Citi spokesman. But how did it happen? Citi could not confirm but suggested that some of the customers may have been involved in breaches at other companies that gave the hackers the full suite of information they needed. “I suspect what you’re going to find is this was a very sophisticated hack by a group that’s done more than this,” says Jay Foley executive director at the Identity Theft Resource Center.

Citi’s is among the latest in a series of breaches so far this year. There have been 216 year-to-date, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center, down from 333 in the same period last year. In many cases, fraudsters have grown more sophisticated and are better able to access customer information and remain undetected than in the past, says Phil Blank, managing director of security, risk and fraud for Javelin Strategy and Research. A report out today by Javelin shows that among roughly two dozen of Visa and MasterCard’s largest credit card issuers, the bigger institutions including Bank of America and U.S. Bank are among the best equipped to prevent, detect and resolve fraud. The relatively smaller banks on the list came in at the bottom, including State Farm, Associated Bank and SunTrust. The annual study, which was conducted before reports of Citi’s breach surfaced, ranked Citi in ninth place.

The study considered several factors, including financial firms’ security procedures, the availability of fraud alerts and other monitoring strategies. In response to the findings, a SunTrust spokesman says the company has “processes and procedures in place to ensure we are vigilant in our responsibility to clients.” A State Farm spokesman says the company maintains physical and electronic safeguards that comply with federal regulations and that it regularly monitors computer networks and tests the strength of its security. A spokeswoman for Associated Bank says it employs several strategies to detect fraud against customers, including monitoring daily transaction activity and analyzing reported customer issues to identify potential security breaches and fraud. Cabela’s WFB, which was the fourth-worst bank on the Javelin list, did not return a request for comment.

And identity theft experts say that protecting consumers’ credit card information doesn’t just stop with the card issuer. In the past, payment processing systems, which transmit credit card information from a retailer to the card issuer after a purchase is made, have been hacked. “There are all sorts of probabilities,” says Foley.

Luckily, consumers have protections when their credit cards are fraudulently used. Credit card companies hold customers liable for up to $50 of unauthorized credit card transactions and often times they waive that charge as well. Still, knowing that your credit card number or other identifying information is out there is enough to make most consumers queasy – and could increase the chances of becoming a victim of fraud going forward. Here are Javelin’s rankings for the card issuers providing the most and least protection and help against fraud.

Best (score out of a possible 100)

Bank of America (87)

Discover (74)

U.S. Bank (73)

USAA (69)

Capital One (68)


State Farm (43)

Associated Bank (46)

SunTrust (47)

Cabela’s WFB (48)

RBS (49)


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    • By WebOsPublisher

      Windows Forms
      How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      Index ‹ Windows Forms ‹ Windows Forms General
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      Hello ..
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      but i want to know how to use it to extrcat the second and thered and forth and fifth icon from exe or dll icon ..
      because this method is extracting the first icon ..
      i use it like this ..
      Me.Icon = System.Drawing.Icon.ExtractAssociatedIcon("C:\Windows\Explorer.exe")
      I Tried To Use it like this but it didn’t work :
      Me.Icon = System.Drawing.Icon.ExtractAssociatedIcon("C:\Windows\Explorer.exe 5")
      Me.Icon = System.Drawing.Icon.ExtractAssociatedIcon("C:\Windows\Explorer.exe, -5")
      Thanks , with best regards ..
      Windows Forms22
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      hello mohdtmn
      this will be good sample
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
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      but this was not helpful ..
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      for examble i tried to open :
      it says : the specified file is not a .net assembely ..
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      regards , and thanks
      Wang Chi
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      There is a API to extract icon, you can try. To call this API, you need import shell32.dllHICON ExtractIcon(
      HINSTANCE hInst,
      LPCTSTR lpszExeFileName,
      UINT nIconIndex
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      I have a bit of code that uses windows ImageList cache, but it’s way to big to put here.
      Contact me at andrew(dot)vos(at)gmail.com and I’ll send you the source… (It’s in vb.net)
      It can extract small, medium and large icons from associated files.
      Oh wait a minute, from exe files this will only extract the associated icon :( sorry.
      Dylan Morley
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      Check out Steves’ Icon Extractor utility, really nice implementation…
      Posted: Windows Forms General, How To Extract Icons From Exe Or Dll Files Using ExtractAssociatedIcon ??
      Wang Chi how to do it in vb.net i really tried ..
      AndrewVos I Sent you an e-mail
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      regards .
      Index ‹ Windows Forms ‹ Windows Forms General

    • It sounds a bit uneasy that the use of our credit cards on the processing machines by retailers has been hacked,some of us can only be proud of our card issuers for implementing mechanisms to detect un authorize usage of our cards and even add enhance security measures to ensure that no other person can use it excerpt the rightful owner.

    • This was timely for me. Three weeks ago B of A contacted me about a suspicious $40 charge on my debit card. I hadn’t made the charge. I canceled the card, and B of A said they would send me a new one within ten days. That didn’t happen. They didn’t order the new card. I was irritated I had to waste time going to my branch to get a new card.

      But, they quickly notified me of the suspicious charge; they resolved the fraud quickly and returned the money to my account. I was thinking of switching to SunTrust until I saw their low score for protecting their customers. Big picture: despite a customer service glitch to get a new card issued, B of A did its job.

    • If there is a good thing about credit card fraud, from a cardholder’s stand point, it is that ultimately the issuer is liable for fraudulent transaction amounts. Still, the investigative process can take a while and you will be wholly involved in it. Moreover, there are a number of things that can go wrong and your credit history may suffer as a result. So just because someone else is paying for it, does not mean that you will necessarily get off scot-free. http://blog.unibulmerchantservices.com/credit-card-issuers-do-poorly-at-detecting-well-at-resolving-fraud

    • Great article… It’s so important to use a credit card company that protects you. In these times of fraud, uncertainty and identity theft, it’s nice to know a few corporations care about their customers.


About Pay Dirt

  • Pay Dirt examines the millions of consumer decisions Americans make every day: What to buy, how much to pay, whether to rave or complain. Lead written by Quentin Fottrell, the blog examines these interactions, providing readers with news, insight and tips on shopping, spending, customer service, and companies that do right – and wrong – by their customers. Send items, questions and comments to quentin.fottrell@dowjones.com or tweet @SMPayDirt.