RFID Skimming - Understanding the Threats and Process

RFID Skimming - Understanding the Threats and Process

RFID skimming is something that many regular folks may not fully understand despite that fact that they are likely the worse hit. As the world continues its march toward a complete dependence on technology, new challenges continue to emerge.

RFID skimming is one of these challenges. Though not new, it may not be receiving the kind of attention it deserves. Let’s step back and start from the top so everyone can understand what w are talking about.

RFID or Radio Frequency Identification is a technology that allows for wireless identification. For example, credit or debit cards today are enabled with chips. These chips can transmit the information embedded in them. It is not only restricted to these types of cards.

We can also see this technology used at toll points, parking spaces and many other situations. This technology increases efficiency, speeds up the process and reduces dependence on human intervention.

How Does RFID Skimming Come into the Picture?

With an RFID card reader, anybody can get the information being transmitted by these cards. Your stores and merchants do this legally but criminals do this illegally.  That is what is referred to as RFID skimming.

The Threat and Process

The threat here is simply that your card’s details can be gotten when you least expect. This includes places you consider safe. In this video, you see innocent citizens who were simply purchasing gas having their card details copied.

We also saw an attendant at a fast food establishment stealing the card details of unsuspecting customers. Sadly, the threat has increased. First, the dependence on this technology is growing rapidly. Secondly, these criminals now have the means to read the details of your credit or debit card while it is in your wallet.

Yes you read right! Remember that this is not just about your card but about anything that uses this technology. Your international passport and other means of identification are also at risk. This is how identity theft is pulled off.


Finally, everything we have looked at points to one thing. We need to take some serious precautions to protect our precious cards and other means of identification. Just the same way you can protect your privacy by covering your laptop’s camera with a webcam cover, you should also protect your cards.

The same goes for companies and others that use this technology. It is important to protect your customers from these attacks.

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