The Life of a Stolen Credit Card

Credit card fraud represents a multibillion-dollar a year industry, with consumers losing billions, banks losing tens of billions, and merchants losing hundreds of billions (Shaughnessy 2011). These loses result in higher interest rates for credit card users, and a more restrictive and draconian system to loss prevention that results in the legitimate businesses and honest costumers losing money. While fraudulent charges are only a small fraction of all credit card transitions, an entire underground economy exists around the buying and selling of stolen credit cards.


Skimmers can be placed over ATMs, Gas Pumps, and even used by crooked service industry workers are the origin point for stolen credit card information (How to avoid being skimmed). Skimmers are able to steal the costumer’s personal information directly off the cards. Some skimmers even have Bluetooth or wireless technology built into them to automatically transmit the valuable data to the next chain in the life of a stolen credit card (All About Skimmers). While some start up companies have invented wallets that are impermeable to RFID skimmers, this doesn’t solve the risks

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