Your guide to RFID Security - RFID Blocker Card to protect your information - Securitybase

Your guide to RFID Security - RFID Blocker Card to protect your information

RFID in our cards and travel documents is making convenience a priority, but how about security? Contactless payments with your credit card and easy airport check-ins with your passport—it all relies on RFID technology, which uses radio waves to transmit data without making physical contact.

While RFID offers great advantages, it also introduces a security risk: electronic pickpocketing. With a handheld scanner, thieves can steal your personal and financial information from RFID-enabled cards or travel documents within seconds, often without you even noticing.

This article will explain how you can protect your information with our top-of-the-line RFID blocking solutions – the SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card and RFID protection passport sleeves.

What Is RFID Skimming And Why Should You Be Concerned?

RFID skimming is a type of theft where a criminal uses a scanning device to steal your credit card or passport information which is embedded in RFID chips. RFID stands for Radio-Frequency Identification and the chip in your card transmits data wirelessly. RFID stands for Radio-Frequency Identification. Small RFID chips are embedded in many everyday items, including:

  • Credit cards and debit cards
  • Passports and travel documents
  • Key fobs and access cards
  • Employee badges

These chips contain your personal details, such as your name, biometric information, account number, and expiration date. While RFID scanners' reading range is limited to a few centimetres, that's all a criminal needs to steal your information.

Security Risks Of RFID

  • Eavesdropping and Data Theft: Malicious actors equipped with RFID readers can steal data from RFID tags within a short distance. This stolen data, containing personal or financial information, could be used for fraud.
  • Cloning and Spoofing: Hackers may exploit weaknesses in RFID systems to create cloned tags that mimic legitimate ones. These cloned tags could then be used to gain unauthorised access to physical locations or digital systems.
  • Relay Attacks: In more sophisticated attacks, hackers might use relay devices to amplify the signal of an RFID reader, potentially reading tags from a greater distance than intended.

How RFID Theft Works

  • Step 1: Target - the target is carrying an RFID-enabled credit card or passport
  • Step 2: Using a tool - the criminal has a special RFID reader that can pick up the signal from your card from a short distance (usually a few inches).
  • Step 3: Theft - The reader reads the data from your card or passport, which might include your card number, expiration date, name, date of birth and other information.

RFID Hacking Tools

While some RFID hacking tools can be complex, others are surprisingly simple. An example is the Flipper Zero, which can emulate RFID and NFC tags and can be purchased easily online. Imagine a gadget that can scan for certain types of key cards or credit cards from a short distance. That's the basic idea behind some RFID readers used for hacking. More advanced tools might strengthen those scans or exploit weaknesses in certain security systems. The key thing to remember is that these tools on their own are a manageable risk. It's the people with the know-how to use them for bad intentions that we need to be aware of and protect against.

RFID hacking tools can be downloaded easily from sites such as Hacktricks, and online tutorials, which can teach anyone how to read RFID cards from a 3 meter distance, can be found easily with a quick Google search. Equipment can be sourced online, enabling a malicious actor to steal information stealthily.

How Can You Prevent RFID Hacking?

  • Keep your RFID-enabled cards and devices close to your person. Don't carry them in your back pocket or easily accessible areas like backpacks or purses. This minimises the chance of someone scanning them from a distance without your knowledge.
  • Be cautious in crowded spaces. Crowded areas like public transportation or events can be prime targets for RFID skimming, where thieves use handheld scanners to steal data from nearby RFID tags.
  • Consider opting out of contactless payments. This can be an extra layer of security, especially for high-value cards.
  • Monitor your statements. Regularly check your credit card statements for suspicious activity.
  • Consider the type of RFID protection needed. Some wallets and sleeves might only block traditional RFID signals, while others offer multi-layered protection against Near Field Communication (NFC) signals.
  • Use RFID-blocking sleeves or cards. These act like a shield, absorbing or disrupting the radio waves emitted by RFID scanners, rendering your information invisible to them. Look for cards and sleeves made with materials like metal mesh or carbon fiber that are known to be effective RFID blockers.

The Science Behind The RFID Shield: How The SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card Works

The SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card goes beyond simple signal reflection. It employs advanced active jamming technology to create a secure zone around your cards. 

Unlike passive blockers that just absorb signals, the SecurityBase RFID Blocking card actively disrupts the communication between scanners and RFID chips. Imagine two people trying to talk on the phone, but a third person keeps interrupting the conversation with loud noise. That's essentially what the SecurityBase RFID blocking card does – it injects a scrambled signal that makes communication between the scanner and your card's chip impossible, preventing any information to be stolen.

Passive vs. Active RFID Blocking

The other type of RFID blocking is passive. Passive blockers, like some wallets lined with metal mesh,  absorb incoming RFID signals. While they offer some protection, they can be less effective against stronger scanners. SecurityBase takes a more effective approach with active RFID blocking. By actively jamming the communication between scanner and chip, our cards protect against unauthorised access to your information.

Additional Benefits of the SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card include;

  • Discreet and convenient: Designed to fit in your wallet, the SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card is the same size and thickness as a standard credit card. You don't need to modify your everyday habits—slip the card into your wallet for effective protection.
  • Battery-free: The SecurityBase RFID Blocker Card operates without batteries, so there is no hassle of replacements and ensures constant, reliable protection.
  • Multi-signal defense: In today's digital world, threats can come from various sources. The SecurityBase card blocks traditional RFID signals and shields your information from Near Field Communication (NFC) signals used for contactless payments on some smartphones.

SecurityBase RFID Passport Sleeves: Travel With Confidence

Your passport is an important document, holding your identity and travel authorisation. Unfortunately, modern passports also contain RFID chips, making them vulnerable to unauthorised scans. SecurityBase RFID Passport Sleeves provide an extra layer of defence for your important travel documents:

  • Durable and discreet: Constructed from high-quality, tear-resistant materials, the SecurityBase RFID Passport Sleeves effectively block RFID signals while safeguarding your passport from everyday wear and tear. The sleek design ensures your passport remains protected without making it bulky.
  • Peace of mind when traveling: When travelling abroad, security risks increase. The SecurityBase RFID Passport Sleeves eliminate the worry of unauthorised access to your passport information. Now, you can focus on exploring new destinations with complete confidence.

Multiple Layers Of RFID Hacking Defence

  • Multiple layers of defence are best- combining RFID-blocking products with good security practices offers the strongest protection.
  • Balance convenience with security - some RFID-blocking wallets might be bulkier than traditional ones. Finding the right balance between convenience and protection is important.
  • Keep yourself informed - about the evolving landscape of RFID and NFC security threats and implementing appropriate protection is essential for protecting sensitive data

SecurityBase RFID Protection For Peace Of Mind

Protecting your personal and financial information is more important now than ever.  RFID theft is a growing problem but easily preventable with the right tools. SecurityBase RFID Blocker Cards and Passport Sleeves offer a cost-effective and reliable solution for everyday RFID protection.

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