RFID Credit Card Protection?

This is an interesting take on the issue.  Security, particularly for money is something that I find important.  I have heard recently about cars keys, many new cars are keyless entry, as well as the new RFID credit cards.  Do you need to protect these things? I have heard many articles suggesting you do, but this one, and I have no knowledge of the source here, suggests you do not. My take on this is that it’s up to your personal level of risk.  If I was still living in NYC, I’d probably have a RFID protected wallet as well as a protector for my car keys.  Since I live in the suburbs, I do not see the risk.  I am just not around enough people.

So, if I said I am not sure about the source, why am I posting about this article.  Well, because I tend to trust the article by what the author says.  The author makes it clear that all you need is a few sheets of aluminum foil, preferably the heavy kind, to protect your cards.  This is also true for your car keys.

My degree is electrical engineering, and while in the military, I specialized in radar work.  Sufficed to say that I know more than the average person about radio waves whether they be in your microwave oven, your phone or wifi router, or whatever.  The concept is a Faraday cage; Faraday was the man who figured out radio.   All you have to do is to put your credit cards or keys in a Faraday cage, and you are all set. Rather than buying something elaborate, just grab a kitchen bag, line it with some aluminum foil, and you are all set.  you might want to glue it together.  To make sure it is working, just stand next to your car, and push the unlock button on the key while in your foil lined bag.  If it doesn’t work, then you have enough layers of foil.  2 layers  of foil should do it.

For a wallet, I would probably just buy some; a quick google search for RFID CARD SLEEVE found many for a reasonable price.  There is a dork factor that would have me resistant were I still a single guy living in the city against a home made version for cards compared to the price.  Thinking about it, I’ll bet putting some foil in the bill fold of your wallet, which is folded around your cards in a standard bifold or trifold wallet would do the trick.

Anyway, the fact that the guy told you NOT to buy anything makes me think that he is right on the rest of it.  I say, the article is a year ago, and having your card stolen/hacked is annoying.  That happened to me once in the days before RFID when I was living in NYC, and well that’s why I would do it there.

I should add that if you get one of those passport cards from the government, then suggest you put it in a sleeve, so that should tell you something.  Clearly there is a risk there.

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