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Fraud can often be a complex web of activities. Our examination processes are designed to methodically navigate these complexities, seeking out potential irregularities and understanding their implications.

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Financial disputes require a nuanced approach. Our financial litigation support aims to provide a researched perspective, helping to clarify and contextualize monetary issues within legal frameworks.

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The realms of finance, law, and leadership are vast and interconnected. Our coaching programs, lectures, and training sessions aim to offer insights into these fields, fostering a holistic understanding for professionals seeking to enhance their skills and leadership acumen.

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At Revelatus Advisory & Consulting, we pride ourselves on forging robust partnerships with our esteemed clients. Through a blend of expertise, dedication, and client-centric focus, we deliver the following unparalleled benefits:

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Our services are more than just a financial commitment—they're a pivotal strategic asset. By delving deep into financial intricacies, navigating potential pitfalls, and offering tailored solutions, we empower our clients to achieve sustainable growth. Our expertise doesn't just add value; it crafts a foundation for success that extends beyond mere figures.

Dr. Tonisha Pinckney: A Symphony of Expertise, Leadership, and Resilience

Tonisha "Dr. Toni" Pinckney, Ph.D., MSCJ, MAFF, CFE, CBE, CSCD, CCII


Dr. Tonisha "Dr. Toni" Pinckney is a multi-faceted leader in forensic accounting, financial litigation, and risk assessment, holding a Ph.D., MSCJ, MAFF, and CFE among her credentials. Appointed to various leadership roles, she has been an advocate for gender equality, mental health, and victim support, serving on advisory councils from George Washington University to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). A seasoned educator, she has taught at multiple esteemed institutions and earned the 2018 Outstanding Mentor of the Year Award.

Her professional expertise spans from business and ethics to financial crimes and mediation. A dynamic speaker, Dr. Toni covers a broad spectrum of topics, leaving her audience transformed. In her corporate and consultancy roles, most recently at MUFG and US Bank, she has been a transformational leader in risk management. Throughout her career, she has made a multi-million-dollar impact across a diverse client base.

A survivor of multiple life challenges, she channels her experiences into advocacy and education. A proud mother and an avid gamer, Dr. Toni values work ethic, excellence, and justice. She currently resides in the Charlotte, NC metro area after nearly a decade in Massachusetts. Dr. Tonisha Pinckney is not just a professional; she's a phenomenon.

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 illustrate the scenarios of stolen credit cards and card skimming.

Shielding Small Businesses from the Surge of Credit Card Fraud

November 09, 20233 min read

“Credit card fraud doesn't just steal profits; it erodes trust. Secure your business with knowledge and the right defenses.” - Dr. Tonisha M. Pinckney

Shielding Small Businesses from the Surge of Credit Card Fraud


In the intimate ecosystem of small businesses, where personal customer relations and each sale are pivotal, the specter of credit card fraud casts a long shadow. It's not only a drain on finances but can irreparably tarnish the reputation you've meticulously built.

This guide unpacks the intricacies of credit card fraud, exposes the sophisticated methods of fraudsters, and equips small business owners with a comprehensive defense strategy.

credit card fraud atm images

Understanding Credit Card Fraud:

Credit card fraud encompasses the unauthorized use of a credit card to make transactions or purchases. It's a deceptive practice that takes many forms, each requiring a keen eye and preventive action to manage.

Types of Fraud (some):

  • Card-not-present (CNP) fraud: Transactions conducted online or over the phone, where the cardholder does not physically present the card.

  • Card-present fraud: Occurs when a physical card, whether stolen or replicated, is used to make transactions.

  • Lost card fraud: When a lost card is picked up and used by an unauthorized individual.

  • Application fraud: Involves the use of stolen or fake documents to open a credit card account in someone else's name.

  • Account takeover: When a fraudster gains access to a cardholder’s account details and makes unauthorized changes or transactions.

A Few of the Credit Card Fraud Tactics

  • Stolen Cards: Thieves make unauthorized purchases using physically stolen credit cards or pilfered card information.

  • Card Skimming: Devices secretly installed on ATMs or POS terminals record card details for later fraudulent use.

  • Phishing and Vishing: Deceptive emails (phishing) or voice calls (vishing) con employees into surrendering credit card details.

  • Chargebacks Fraud: Customers unjustly reverse legitimate charges, often after receiving the purchased product or service.

  • Employee Misuse: Internal fraud where staff members exploit their access to customer card information.

The Ripple Effects of Credit Card Fraud

The impact of credit card fraud on a small business can be profound and multifaceted:

  • Financial Losses: Immediate costs include chargebacks, fines, and the value of lost goods or services.

  • Operational Disruption: Dealing with the aftermath of fraud can consume valuable time and operational resources.

  • Reputational Harm: Damage to customer trust can lead to a decline in business and long-term brand erosion.

  • Legal Repercussions: In some cases, businesses may face legal action if negligence in protecting customer information is determined.

Building Defenses Against Fraud

Preventive Measures:

  • EMV Compliance: Implement EMV (Europay, Mastercard, and Visa) chip card readers to minimize counterfeit card risks.

  • Secure Processing: Use payment processors with strong security measures to protect against data breaches.

  • Staff Training: Equip employees with the knowledge to identify and handle suspicious transactions securely.

  • Robust Data Security: Safeguard customer card information with encryption and secure network storage.

  • Intelligent Fraud Detection: Integrate advanced fraud detection software to monitor and alert you to suspicious activities.

  • Regular Transaction Reviews: Scrutinize transaction records frequently to spot and investigate anomalies.

Responsive Actions

  • Immediate Notification: Alert your payment processor and the affected card issuers without delay.

  • Detailed Documentation: Compile records of fraudulent transactions, noting all pertinent details.

  • Honest Customer Dialogue: Notify impacted customers quickly and offer reassurance that the issue is being addressed.


Credit card fraud is a daunting challenge, but with an arsenal of preventative tools and strategies, small businesses can stand their ground. Vigilance, education, and the right technological support form the triad of a robust defense.

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Revelatus Advisory & Consulting, LLC specializes in empowering small businesses to safeguard their operations against fraud. Our expertise extends to crafting EMV implementation plans, conducting thorough staff training sessions, and setting up advanced fraud detection systems tailored to your unique needs.

For an ally in the fight against credit card fraud and the preservation of your business's integrity, connect with us at Revelatus Advisory & Consulting, LLC.

Every transaction is a thread in the tapestry of your business's story. Let's ensure yours is woven with security and trust, with every stitch in place to protect against the unraveling forces of credit card fraud.

small businessfraud riskcredit card fraudEMV complianceskimmingidentity theftinternal fraudaccount takeovercredit card scamscredit card theft
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Dr. Tonisha M. Pinckney

Dr. Toni Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) | Master Analyst in Financial Forensics (MAFF) | Forensic Accounting | Risk Management | Financial Litigation | Civil & Criminal Mediation/Negotiation | Consulting Expert Witness | Leadership Coach | Author

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