Credit card theft has always been a concern, but now with credit cards that use radio frequency chips or RFID, to complete transactions it is even safer for hackers to gain your credit card number. The hacker doesn’t have to upload data to your computer or try to break into a businesses or banks’ server. There is also no need for the hacker of trying to cover his/her tacks, because there is no way for you of knowing until it is too late. A down side for the hacker is that you can’t steal as many credit cards. Anyone can even purchase a RFID skimmer on the Internet for around $100.
Even though most of the information is encrypted, it only took a year for a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts to break it. Now with authentication codes implemented it limits the hacker to only one transaction per card, if he can first break the encryption. This makes it less appealing to steal credit cards with RFID skimmers.
The upside is the three-digit validation code on the back is not included as part of the RFID information. To better protect yourself, a company called Augustinowicz sells wallets to block incoming transmissions. You can even wrap your credit card in tin foil, which will do the same.