While cash used to be hidden away when traveling or in the crowded city center so that it would not be stolen, nowadays it is bank and credit cards that are given special attention. Anyone who has ever lost their checking card, formerly also known as an EC card, or who has had it stolen, knows the uncomfortable feeling and fear of the savings in the checking account. In such a situation, it is important to have the card blocked immediately after the loss is discovered.
Important phone numbers for card blocking
In order to have the bank or credit card blocked as quickly and easily as possible, both domestically and from abroad, a uniform blocking emergency call was introduced in 2005. This consumer-friendly blocking emergency call can be used to block checking cards, credit cards, online banking, mobile phones and the electronic identity function of the ID card. If you would like to have your checking card blocked.
It applies to both numbers that only the fees incurred are charged by the foreign network operator used. The barred number can be reached 24 hours a day. All important phone numbers can also be noted on the so-called SOS info pass for card security and are therefore always quickly at hand. The info pass can be downloaded as a PDF.
Card blocking: How to do it correctly
Before calling the hotline, the cardholder should provide his bank code and account number and note the time of the card block during the call. In addition, reports should be made to the local police. This later also serves as evidence for the reimbursement of amounts that have been improperly debited from the checking account. However, there are certain exclusion criteria that exempt retailers and banks from the refund. Gross negligence is a prerequisite for this. This applies if:
- the PIN is noted on the card, or the PIN and checking card are carried together in the purse;
- the wallet is left unattended;
- the card is not blocked immediately after noticing the loss.
If there is no gross negligence, the cardholder can return the direct debit up to eight weeks after payment and the money is immediately transferred back to the checking account.
Block bank card: the ancient blocking service
Card blocking alone is not enough. Cash withdrawals can no longer be made with the PIN. Misuse by electronic direct debit with signature is still possible. All the thief has to do is falsify the cardholder’s signature.
The ancient system can help here. It stands for “combating crime in cashless payments using non-police organizational structures”. As part of this blocking service, a notice is deposited at the central registration office of the trade, which lights up when payments are attempted with stolen or lost checking cards.
Banks cannot request a ancient block, but the victim must have this done personally by the police. Among other things, the card sequence number is required for this. If you do not know them, you can ask your bank. If the card sequence number is not given, the card will only be blocked for ten days and all cards belonging to the account will be blocked. By submitting the number, the additional cards are released and the lost card is permanently blocked. However, not all retailers participate in the ancient system.
Unlock bank card
If the bank card is found again after it has been blocked or if it has been blocked due to incorrect entry of the PIN, it is possible to have it unlocked again. However, this is not possible via the blocked emergency call, but only at the bank that issued the card.
The easiest way is to speak to your branch bank and have an employee unlock it. The bank card, PIN and ID card are required for this and a form must be completed and signed. Direct banks do a similar thing, but the necessary form must be downloaded, completed and signed here by post, fax or scan. Unlocking can be costly at some banks, and some banks do it for free.