Fraudulent use of a payment card

What happens if my card is lost or stolen and someone uses it fraudulently?

Both the cardholder’s and the bank’s obligations must appear in the copy of the contract.

  • Look after your card, make proper use of it, and keep any personal identification number (PIN) secret.
  • In the event of loss or theft, notify your bank immediately. You cannot be held liable for any transactions performed with the card from that moment onwards.
  • You should not be sent an unrequested card, unless it replaces a previous one.
  • The card issuer should always provide you with a way to report the loss, theft or unauthorised use of your card. As soon as you report any such case, the bank must assume liability from that moment onwards for any transaction that has not been authorised by you. However, you will be liable for any transactions carried out before you notified the bank, up to a limit of €50, although this limit will not apply if you have been negligent.
  • You will be considered negligent if you fail to take reasonable care to protect your card or PIN, or you fail to report the loss or theft of your card as soon as possible.
  • Request your bank to block the card either by using the bank’s app on your mobile phone, or by accessing your bank’s website from a computer with an Internet connection, or by calling the telephone number your bank has provided for this purpose.
  • Report the theft to the police (or Civil Guard or at the duty court).
  • Check your account for fraudulent use of the card.
  • If necessary, submit a claim to your bank’s Customer Services or ombudsman and, in the last resort, to the Banco de España.
  • If you detect any suspicious charges in your account after reporting the loss or theft, request a refund from your bank and inform your insurance company.
  • Remember that physical possession of the card is not necessary to commit fraud. The card number, expiry date and CCV (card certification value) is sufficient.
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