Here's how to protect your contactless card from scammers on public transport

Scammers could be taking payments of up to £30 while your card is still in your pocket

17 Feb 2016

The trouble with making something super quick and easy to pay with is that it can also make fraud quick and super easy.

Spotted by an eagle-eyed Facebook user (originally in Russia), the scam allows thieves to extract a quick £30 from your pocket without you even noticing, with the aid of an easily available card reader and some custom software.

So this guy was spotted wandering round with a Point of Sale (POS) device. All he has to do is key in a price less than ...

Posted by Paul Jarvis on Saturday, 13 February 2016

This matches with research Which undertook last year, where the company was able to steal card information and order products worth £3,000 online.

How to disable contactless payments on your debit/credit card

Don’t go cutting up all your contactless cards just yet, though – there are ways of neutering the threat before it happens. The easiest way is to block the RFID chip.

You can do this by mutilating your card, but we wouldn’t recommend it (your bank probably wouldn’t be too happy either). It's far easier to line the card, blocking the contactless support. You can do this a couple of ways: one is to line your wallet with tin foil. Which found that this was effective in preventing contactless cards being read.

If you want something a little more classy than a wallet filled with foil, you can get customised card holders that block the contactless signal – also handy to avoid card clash on the London Underground, which uses similar technology in Oyster cards. A pack of three can be purchased for less than a fiver on Amazon.

READ NEXT: How secure is Apple Pay?

Images: Jemmimus used under Creative Commons

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