We live in a time where everyone fears losing financial privacy. With identity and credit card theft becoming a more prominent concern in today's world. Let’s face it, we will do anything to protect that information and at any cost. But does RFID technology pose a huge threat to our finances? Do we really need RFID blocking products?
We are here to openly discuss why RFID technology has evoked unnecessary fear amongst consumers. RFID technology is defined as, “Radio-frequency identification” and refers to a technology whereby digital data encoded in RFID tags or smart labels are captured by a reader via radio waves. (Lauren Silverman, NPR)” This technology has produced an RFID blocking industry that has spun out of control.
Everyone’s fear in RFID technology lies in the chips that are implanted in credit cards and passports. The fact is most credit cards don’t even carry this chip and are unable to be targeted by an “RFID” thief. The percentage of people with RFID chips is substantially less than those who have EMV Chips in their credit cards.(“Approximately 26 million, out of 550 million that were issued in 2016)”. EMV chips, “Are an embedded microchip and associated technology designed to enable secure payment at compatible point of sale (POS) terminals”(Whatis).EMV chips require contact in order to be read and make it more difficult for thieves to acquire your information.
With false news on the rise, consumers are looking to brands to protect them from RFID theft in credit cards. According to “Roger Grimes, a computer security expert. He assures that you probably don't need to buy an RFID-blocking wallet. "There's probably hundreds of millions of financial crimes being done every year and so far zero, real life RFID crime," he says.
An RFID thief would have to be tremendously dedicated to following you around all day to obtain your card information. When the fact of the matter is more thieves will simply go online to try to obtain your identity or financial information.
With so many in the dark about RFID technology. Brands are emerging with products such as fanny packs, skinny jeans and “RFID” lined wallets all claiming to block credit card thieves. (RFID Lined wallets are actually just lined with aluminum foil and are not necessary.
Our bottom line? Save your money and skip the RFID-blocking wallet. Utilize your resources against real security threats.