Tech

Your Contactless Card Isn’t As Safe As You Think

As Apple Pay descended on our lives this week with the tech giant’s ploy to dominate mankind, watchdog Which? turned their attention to contactless card payments sans iPhones and Apple Watches.

According to their tests, using contactless payments could increase your risk of fraud.

The investigators played Catch Me If You Can for a day and discovered that a security flaw in your cards enables thieves to easily and cheaply use scanners to nab your dosh.

The hand-held device only has to be near a ‘tap and pay’ card to pick up your card number and expiry date.

Out of six debit cards and four credit cards tested, the scanners picked up data from all of them, though none gave away the CVV number.

What can they do without that you ask? Even you can't remember what it is without having to check every time you put in an Amazon order.

Well, in the case of the Which? investigators they simply coined a new fake name and address and ordered a brand new £3,000 TV from a reputedly ‘mainstream’ site. 

Around £2 billion (and 10 transactions per second) was spent through contactless payments last year according to the UK Cards Association, and, whilst cards are coded to mask personal data their are several devices that can be used to break through the security measures.

The Shortlist team managed to find one such device with nothing more than a cursory bit of Googling, turning up the scanner ‘easily and cheaply.’We didn’t buy it obviously, because morals, but it highlights how readily available the gadgets are if you know what you're looking for an have the morals of a James Bond villain.

[Via: Which?]

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