Over the past few years, a new technology has been developing and is taking hold of our daily lives; it is called RFID. So what is RFID and how safe is it to use? Do you want to know more about RFID technology and RFID skimming? Here, we’ve put together the relative information as well as ways of avoiding this malicious form of scanning and privacy intrusion.
RFID and Its Relative Stats
Radio Frequency Identification is a technology in which the electromagnetic field is used to detect and read the information from RFID tags. These labels are used to store the information which can only be read using radio frequency signals.
Some of the statistics you should know include:
In 2017 alone, there are nearly 8 billion RFID tags are purchased so far. And in 2016, these tags are sold a staggering 12.6 billion dollars. It is easily predictable that the numbers will be increasing in the next four years; sales in 2018 will likely surpass 17.6 billion dollars. The tags sales volume is going to be 24.6 billion dollars in global market by 2020. Seeing as 96% of the retailers have plans to start tagging apparel with RFID, there will be even more people using the new cards by default. As it stands, however, these new cards are contactless with 92 million currently in use. Sadly, RFID skimming is quickly becoming a travesty.
According to a survey, there were 2 million more victims of RFID skimming in 2016 than a year before; $16 billion was lost through RFID skimming, which includes ATM fraud and online hacking attack.
Places where RFID skimming is most likely to occur
Why is RFID skimming easy? Stealing private data and information from RFID chip is relatively easy with a RFID scanner. Easy availability of card reading machines on Ecommerce websites, the habit of putting smartcards in the pocket, and availability of mobile apps that can be used from RFID skimming has greatly contributed. RFID readers can read cards even when inside a material shopping bag or plastic carrier bags within short distances. When people get out, they use their card without taking much precaution about their surroundings. Skimming is most likely to occur in six places which include; retail stores, ATMs, public transport, restaurants, gas pumps, and parked vehicles with keyless parking system. You need to pay attention to these places.
What all data can be Stolen through RFID
Are you aware that if skimming happened you’ll have a lot to lose? There is no doubt that your information will be stolen with malicious intent. But you know what are they exactly? They can get your credit card number, the expiration date, and your name. This information can then be duplicated on a card or passport. What is likely to happen next? There are many possibilities all which can be avoided by above the right procedures.
How do you protect your credit cards from being scanned?
By now, you probably have deep understanding of RFID and RFID skimming. While this technology makes our lives convenient, it also has potential to make negative impacts.
Here are 8 elaborate ways of preventing RFID skimming;
- Placing RFID cards next to each other.
- Placing RFID cards in the front pocket. It is harder to steal your information than when placed in the back pocket.
- While using card in stores, make sure that no one is standing too close to you. RFID readers can steal your information from 15ft. away.
- Avoid using such cards in stores and try to limit their usage to your home only.
- Staying extra careful during weekends; thieves tend to install skimming device on a weekend when they know the bank won’t be open again for more than 24 hours.
- Monitor your credit cards statement regularly. It will help you to know whether your credit card in a normal condition or not.
- Wrapping the card in aluminum foil. While this worked well years back, it can easily be breached with today’s advanced technology.
- Using wallets with RFID shield.
It’s m hope that you got a deeper understanding of RFID and how to protect your information from being scanned. If you liked this article, please share it with your friends online. Remember to indicate the resource, thank you!