Christmas and New Year are around the corner and it is time for merry making and good cheer.  Schools are nearly closing and parents are keen to ensure that their children enjoy their holidays with new clothes, toys and plenty of food.  One thing that we are all aware of is that there is limited money in our pockets due to the current harsh economic environment due to the scarcity of foreign currency and we have seen in the last few months the food basket has been increasing substantially.

As the CCZ, we would like to caution the public to use money carefully and also to keep it safe when going out shopping during this festive season. Cash shortages have been effective in driving the use of plastic money. This has led to a rise in mobile banking and debit or credit card use by the general public. The CCZ urges people to take good care of their bank cards to avoid becoming a victim of credit card fraud since these cards can be cloned. Fraudsters need your PIN number to complete the scam so keeping your pin security is the first step to preventing fraud.  It is also advisable to use only your own bank ATMs, particularly those attached to a bank branch and those that have security guards. Avoid asking for help of any person loitering outside the ATM or those who volunteer to assist you if you get stuck since they might be thieves.

Still ensure that you look at expiry dates and poor quality products so that you are not saddled with sour milk, curdled yoghurt and expired tinned foods.

What we are urging consumers is that they should live within their means.  CCZ takes this opportunity to urge consumers to know their rights and demand them.  We wish all consumers a Blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year.