Are the chipped credit cards we’ve been compelled to use secure? Yes.
Is this linked article a crock of shit? Yes. The article falsely states the chips in our credit cards –EMIT– data. The article is a con job attempting to mislead people into buying RFID “blockers.” The article’s “warning” is a specious lie of omission.
A specious statement is one that uses the truth to tell a lie of omission. Can the data stored on the chip of our credit cards be read? Yes. There is readable data stored in the chip.
Does the chip itself emit the data as the article falsely claims? No that is the lie of omission.
The chip in our credit cards is a “passive” RFID chip. It has no power of its own. It cannot emit anything until a powered reader like a point of sale card reader or a cellphone powers the chip.
So it is true the chips do store data but they do not emit data. It is more simplistically useful to understand the data is metaphorically “pulled” from the chipset by the reading device because that reading device provides the power to do so.
The contactless cards and anything being manufactured that a cellphone can (((tap)))® can only be powered and read from a distance of ~1″. They use a wireless network protocol called Near Field Communication (NFC) and “near” means ~1 inch (~25mm) so anybody trying to read your card in your wallet or a purse would have to be tapping on your hinder and its almost preposterous to think it would not ordinarily be felt. Surrepticious contact may be made in crowded buses when its standing room only and bodies are packed up against one another so there are circumstances which can bring your card into proximity of a bad guy with a reading device; but again, the reading device has to placed and held onto or near your hinder for the split seconds it takes to power the chip and read its data: the encrypted data.
Furthermore, all that can be read from the chip in our credit cards that identifies your account is a token. Think of a token as a unique alphanumeric nickname for your actual account. Who is a67c445x89?
Nobody knows who a67c445x89 is except your bank which receives that token (nickname) sent over the cellular network and uses it to look you up on their secure servers. Let’s say somebody was hugging your butt on the bus this morning. What did they get? Where can it be used? Furthermore, the nickname is encrypted on both ends of the communication.
Anything that uses NFC is very secure. It is ludicrous to believe the banks would use a technology that was not secure. Your credit card account cannot be hijacked by surfers standing near you and reading your account data as these fake articles claim. I feel no compulsion to buy and use any “blockers” and neither should you.