Help Desk FAQ

Credit Cards

Debit Cards

 

Should I use a credit card or a debit card when shopping online?

Consumers who have both a credit card and a debit card should generally use their credit card online. Credit cards offer significantly greater protections for consumers than debit cards do. For example, credit card customers have the right to dispute fraudulent or erroneous charges—including those for undelivered or damaged goods—within 60 days of when the charge first appeared on a billing statement. And liability for fraudulent or erroneous credit card charges is limited to $50 by law. (Your liability may be nothing if the card issuer has a “zero liability” policy.)

With a debit card, your liability is limited to $50 only if you dispute the charge within two days. After two days, you could be liable for up to $500. Beyond 60 days, you could be liable for all unauthorized transactions. What’s more, while credit card disputes are in progress, the funds are temporarily restored to your account, but during a debit card dispute the money could be gone until you successfully win the dispute.

Additionally, certain credit cards may offer additional benefits that some debit cards do not, such as an extended warranty. Contact your card issuers for more information.

 
 
 
 

Quick Menu

Support Consumer Action

Support Consumer
Facebook FTwitter T

Consumer Help Desk

Advocacy