Don’t Stand So Close To Me!

Here at Compliance3 we major on Contact Centres, and compliance. Our founders set up some of Britain’s first contact centres, or ‘call centres’ as they were called back in the day. We now work closely with major contact centres to help them improve and manage their compliance to regulations such as PCI DSS and the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that will replace Britain’s Data Protection Act.

We are also, as you may have noticed, passionate about data security and we were recently warned about a disturbing new means of electronic pick-pocketing that exploits contactless or NFC (Near Field Communication) technology.

I love technology – call me ‘Inspector Gadget’ – and I confess there’s something slightly cool and ‘James Bond’ about paying one’s bar bill with a swipe of an Apple Watch or iPhone – that is assuming your bar bill is under thirty quid.

But a policeman friend recently sent me this photo of an electronic pick-pocket, purportedly taken on a London bus.

NFC Surfer at

The theft is simple, the thief simply has to register a ‘purchase’ on the NFC reader with a value of less than thirty pounds, then swipe the NFC reader past a trouser pocket that looks to have a wallet, and if there’s a contactless card in that wallet – kerching! Portable NFC readers (and copiers) are available on a well known auction site for under fifty pounds.

Given that sometimes it’s impossible to avoid standing close to people, particularly on public transport, men might want to consider putting their payment cards in an inside jacket pocket, or investing in a wallet that offers NFC or RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) protection.

Of course you could always test your own wallet’s security in your local pub, if you need an excuse to visit!