Privacy Blog

"Friends don’t let friends get spied on.' – Richard Stallman, President of the Free Software Foundation and longtime advocate of privacy in technology.

Blur Uses One-Time Use Credit Card Numbers to Block Hackers

Worried about using your credit card online? You shouldn’t be. Using a credit card or debit card online is safer than using checks or credit cards in person or in the mail. However, many people prefer the extra safety of using one-time use credit card numbers. That means your real credit card number is never visible to the seller. Hackers can’t steal what they don’t have.

I wrote before about such one-time use credit card numbers, also called virtual credit card numbers, at Everything in that article is still valid today but now you have an additional option: Blur (formerly known as DoNotTrackMe) offers a service that allows you to buy items without actually giving out any information. The feature is free for thirty days, but then it costs $4.99 a month.

You can read more on the company’s web site at

Comment: I am always in favor of more available options when it comes to security. However, the offering for Blur strikes me as a product that is late to the game. Other services already offer similar security at little or no charge at all.

As I wrote at, many banks offer one-time use credit card numbers to their customers at no charge. I use that service from Bank of America. Next, Apple Pay is the new service that is gaining widespread popularity and acceptance and it also never gives your true credit card number to the merchants.

Finally, PayPal is a very-high security option that also never provides your true credit card number to the merchants. PayPal also insures all transactions against fraudulent use. I make all of my online purchases with PayPal whenever possible. If I encounter an online merchant that does not accept PayPal, I either (1.) go to a different web site or (2.) pay with my Bank of America virtual credit card.

However, I suspect that Blur will appeal to some people who do not have a PayPal account or a bank account that offers virtual credit card numbers. Still, it would be cheaper to open a (free) PayPal account.

Categories: Credit Cards

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