Friday, 16 December 2011

Slightly better credit card fraud protection

It seems to happen often that online services will get hacked, and then a lot of credit card numbers will be stolen. For the banks, it is cheaper and easier to chase up the fraud after the fact, but for us, their customers, it is a major pain. We need to monitor our online charges carefully, listen for news about hacks, remember which services have our credit card numbers and occasionally change our passwords, cancel our cards, order new ones and distribute the number again. We should have some silos and firewalls in place so that each breach doesn't leave us scrambling to stop up the leaks.

Obviously we should be using different passwords for every online service, but we should also be able to have different disposable credit card numbers for each service, too. That way, if one number gets stolen, the others don't need to change. Also, we can easily trace which service got hacked by which credit card number got falsely charged, even if that company doesn't own up or recognise that a breach has taken place. More public identification of hacked services should make it more likely that they will beef up their security, and the ability to cancel one credit card number without affecting the master account will make things better for consumers. Not perfect, but better.

Mokalus of Borg

PS - There have been a couple of services offering disposable credit card numbers.
PPS - As far as I can tell, they all went out of business.

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