Contact, no contact!

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Contact, no contact!

Post by powdermonkey »

Sorry if this isn't in the right place on these forums but it does stem from a job I went to.

I imagine that most of us have the new contactless payment cards from our banks. For those who may not, they work by a simple tap of the card onto the payment device. They save you the oh so onerous task of putting the card into the slot and the exhausting work of typing in a 4 figure PIN and then having to take the card out of the slot. Phew!

I've found out this week that because of the complete lack of security checks, if your card is lost or stolen, it can be used in the contactless mode and your bank account could be pillaged until you manage to get the card stopped. So even if the thief is a different gender to you (for example) because the shop staff don't look at the card, they wouldn't know that it's a lady's name on a card being used by a male. There's a £30 limit per transaction (shops should not split a larger amount into £30 chunks either) but there is no limit to how many transactions can be done per day. A thief will only stop when the account is empty, caught or the card is stopped. With a contactless credit card, the first doesn't apply so it'd be when the credit limit is reached.

I'm told that even id the card is in your pocket, wallet etc, it can still be read & that there are devices used by crooks to do this. I don't know if this is true or an urban myth at this stage but there are little sleeves/pouches you can get to prevent it. They seem to work in the same way that a Farraday bag does - blocking the signal to the card, These do work, I have one on each of my cards and have tested them in a shop.

I'm considering asking my bank to revert me to non-contactless cards as a precaution. After all, it's not too hard to slip the card in a device and use a PIN, is it?

In the job I went to, the scrote had got £200 out of an account before the card was stopped. He'd done 3 transactions at one shop (the staff never clocked on he'd was in there 3 times in one day & it was a small local shop, not a big superstore) and then 3 each at 2 McDonalds outlets plus a couple more transactions.
I have seen the truth and it makes no sense.