The UK banking sector appears pretty confident in its assertions that ‘contactless’ technology is 100% secure from unauthorised access, and similar claims are also made in respect of Britain’s e-passport. The argument goes something like this; without an ability to cross-reference information that has been ‘skimmed’ from a contactless device with a user profile that is held within a central database – then the data obtained by the ‘skimmer’ is meaningless. It’s a reasonable argument, one that makes sense and ought to offer us a very real measure of confidence in ‘contactless’ banking. However, with the announcement that Sony’s PlayStation has fallen victim to a serious hacking incident, leaving users vulnerable to ID theft, some may wonder just how many customer databases elsewhere have been compromised in recent years?
The results of a very ‘quick and dirty’ trawl through certain internet news portals, looking for examples of database hacking, makes for unsettling reading.
But do keep in mind there’s no need to worry unduly about contactless crime; as a number of products are already available that will allow any concerned carrier of RFID-enabled cards or passports to shield their data. For instance RFID Protect in the UK, offers a wide range of ‘anti-skim’ shielding products.
(Published by kind permission of Contactless)