Years ago, the method used by criminals to see whether a stolen credit card was still active was to charge a penny to the account. If it was authorized, the criminal could then purchase more substantial goods using that card. Credit card companies and banks have both gotten wiser. Today, they look for penny purchases as well as random gas station purchases, for example, as early warning flags. Well, the criminals may have outsmarted everyone this time.
The way the particles land on a given credit card's magnetic stripe are as unique as individual snowflakes or human fingerprints--or so says a Magtek, the company that developed, MagnePrint, which records the unique magnetic media signature for all credit and debit cards scanned through its readers. The first scan by a MagnePrint reader creates a template against which all subsequent scans are compared.
MagnePrint is designed to prevent "skimming." Online carders buy credit-card information from a black-market database, then copy that information onto a blank physical card using a machine that costs about $250. The skimmed … Read more
Advancements in security are somehow giving me the creeps lately. I know I'm not supposed to feel that way. As a consumer, I'm supposed to feel safer, more secure, protected. I certainly don't want anyone stealing my credit card data or my identity.
But after looking over some of the latest advancements at the CardTechSecurTech Conference that took place in San Francisco this week, all I can think about is Big Brother. Fingerprint readers, facial recognition software and biometric passports make me want to crawl into bed and pull the covers over my head.
Maybe I've … Read more
The notion of "frequent gamer rewards" has been tossed around by trend specialists and pundits (like MAKE Magazine's Philip Torrone) for some time now as online gaming becomes more and more profitable and increasingly entrenched in mainstream culture. Now, it's a reality with the World of Warcraft Visa credit card.
You can apply for it now. With your first purchase on the card, according to the World of Warcraft site, you'll earn a free month of game time.
But you won't be able to buy yourself new weapons by using this card. The WoW … Read more
It's not often you see a digital camera with resolution well under 1 megapixel anymore, but you don't often see any this thin either. The aptly named "Credit Card Digital Camera" is less than one-fifth of an inch thick and can easily slip into your shirt pocket. MobileWhack says the ultra-slim camera can store 26 1280x960 images on 8MB of built-in memory, record 40 seconds of video and even be used as a Webcam through its USB connection. And at $40, it's almost cheap enough to fall into the "disposable" category.
With storage devices getting smaller all the time, MP3 players have followed suit--and some have gotten so small that they look almost identical to flash cards themselves.
The credit-card size of a new wallet MP3 player by (who else?) Walletex, which integrates music into the company's similarly sized flash cards, is apparently limited only by the thickness of a USB plug. And Krunker.com notes that it has a "large double-sided branding area for high-quality printing"--a hint at their possible future use as promotional giveaways.
Maybe someday Walletex will do a deal to use Samsung's … Read more
So we've offered some advice on how to keep from losing your luggage and your loved ones. But now we have a technology that can protect your most prized possession of all this holiday shopping season: your credit card.
You might find this silly, but we're willing to bet that some people would find some much-needed peace of mind in this "Credit Card Alarm," a wallet-sized electronic sleeve that beeps if it's empty for too long. And depending on your self-discipline, you could quickly recoup the $55 cost of this device by keeping your credit … Read more