How to Properly Dispose of a Credit Card

We’ve all seen the news stories about the rise in identity theft and the importance of keeping personal information safe. Yet many folks still have old, expired credit cards stashed away in drawers. Or they’re throwing them away without talking proper precautions. Well, the bad guys have gotten smarter. So you have to do the same.

At CHROME, we’re passionate about keeping your information secure. So we’ve put together some quick and easy steps you can take right now to properly destroy old credit cards and keep your financial information out of the hands of even the craftiest crooks.

Demagnetize the Card

Have a plain old fridge magnet? Simply rub your card against the magnet a few times to wipe clean all the data stored on your card. But that still leaves your name and your credit card number exposed. So you’re not finished yet.

Cut Up the Card

Yes, this is still good advice. But these days, you’ve gotta go full-on slasher on your plastic. Slice it up, taking care to cut each block of digits into at least two pieces. Then cut through or across the magnetic strip and the chip. Now throw each sliver into separate trashcans or receptacles--ideally in different places--so no one can possibly put the pieces back together. If you have a cross-cut shredder that can saw through credit cards, that’s even better. Again, scatter the remains.

Chip Chop the Little Chip

That little chip can be hard to cut with scissors. If snipping doesn’t do the trick, take a hammer to it or even smash it under your sharpest stiletto heel. There now. Didn’t that feel good?

Shred the Paper Statements (and switch to digital)

So your card is history but you still have old paper statements that list your account number and transactions. A cross-cut shredder is the weapon of choice, but if yours only cuts in long strips, carefully remove the strips from the shredder and scatter them in multiple trash bags and bins. And don’t think paper recycling is safer than the trash. Recycled materials are still hand-sorted by humans, so don’t leave anything to chance. At CHROME, we’ve gone paperless so you’ll never have to worry about storing or securing paper statements.

Get Fired Up

Ultimately, the best way to destroy paper statements is to set fire to them after shredding. But do it safely in a fireproof receptacle. And don’t burn your credit card; the plastic smells bad and can release toxic chemicals into the environment.

Common sense is best when sending your old cards and statements off to their final resting place. Bad guys are good at what they do, so go ahead and get destructive! And rest assured that CHROME Confidence guarantees that you won’t be liable for any unauthorized online or mobile banking transaction if you report the unauthorized transaction within 60 days from when your statement becomes available. And we’ll never stop finding new ways to keep your information safe and secure.