The Cheapest Wallet that Blocks RFID Signals

Pull out your credit card and flip it over. If the back is marked with the words “PayPass,” “Blink,” or the wi-fi symbol that serves as the universal symbol for wireless data or a few other obscure icons, it’s vulnerable to an uber-stealthy form of pickpocketing. Anyone with a Vivotech RFID credit card reader (available for less than $50 on eBay) can invisibly read your credit card information even if the card remains in your wallet, purse, or pocket. See http://goo.gl/dBJl5d for details about the problem.

Luckily, there is an easy way to block such hacking: keep your credit cards in a wallet that blocks RFID signals. You can find RFID-blocking wallets for sale from many vendors. Prices generally start at $20 and go up. Way up. Here is a cheaper solution: use an Altoids tin.

An Altoid tins effectively bocks RFID signals and costs a lot less than $20. Of course, you do have to empty the tin first. I’ll leave it to you to figure out what to do with the original contents of the Altoid tin.

I use an Altoid tin as a wallet frequently. If I don’t stuff it with too many credit cards, I can also add some “emergency cash” folded up neatly. However, I do add a rubber band or two wrapped around the tin to make sure it doesn’t open up at unexpected times.

Not elegant but it works well.

 

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