Debit Cards' Hidden Traps

Debit card use has been booming, and no wonder: Consumers like using them instead of cash, and they don't carry interest charges, while credit cards do. Also, banks have been heavily promoting debit cards' perks.

But on The Early Show Thursday, Greg Daugherty, executive editor of Consumer Reports Money Adviser, alerted viewers to hidden pitfalls associated with using debit cards.

For starters, debit cards make it easy to overdraw your checking account, and banks often hit consumers with fees, frequently in the $30 range, every time they buy something with nothing left in their account to pay for the purchase. That can happen many times in a row if you don't realize your account's overdrawn, and those fees can really add up.

In addition, debit cards simply don't carry the same fraud protection credit cards do. Potential liability limits are higher, potentially exponentially higher, than with credit cards.

For complete details on what to watch for when using debit cards, click here.