During the pandemic, we were all encouraged to use contactless card payments to reduce close contact between customers and staff, and last week banks informed us that the spending limit for contactless payments should from Â£ 45 to Â£ 100 from 15 October.
However, while this is welcomed by many users of contactless card payments to regularly purchase expensive or multiple goods, there are already warnings that crime could increase as an unintended consequence.
A report for the Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science said the move “is likely to make card theft more attractive, increasing a wide range of acquired crimes, including the stealing of wallets and purses, robberies and burglaries of homes and vehicles for find cards that can be used fraudulently â.
He goes on to say that “past experience suggests this may attract new cohorts of teenage criminals who are more likely to advance into prolonged criminal careers, with implications for longer term crime rates.”
When contactless card payments were introduced in 2007, the spending limit was capped at Â£ 10, increasing to Â£ 20 in 2012 and then to Â£ 30 in 2015, with the current limit of Â£ 45 set in April of l ‘last year, but the new Â£ 100 limit will obviously make credit / debit card theft a much more lucrative prospect.
Contactless payment limit will increase to Â£ 100 in October
The European Managing Director of the Marqueta payments company, Ian Johnson, said: âThe problem with increasing limits for physical contactless payments is that if they are stolen or cloned, it will now be even higher. easy for a fraudster to spend large sums of the victim’s money all at once. Physical cards offer very little security and a fraudster could continue to use their contactless feature until they are canceled. “
Currently, if a card is stolen or used fraudulently, banks are forced to reverse the transaction, although a swift number of fraudulent Â£ 100 payments before the owner cancels the card can leave them with insufficient funds for their daily purchases, travel, etc.
The process of canceling the transaction and restoring the money to the account can sometimes take more than a week, which is too long and the processes should be more immediate if customers are not to be seriously inconvenienced or worse. .
Chancellor Rishi Sunak believes that the adoption of the new limit will be popular and widespread, saying: “As we start to open up the UK economy and people return to the High Street, increasing the limit without contact will make things easier than ever before people pay for their purchases, which gives a welcome boost to retail that will protect jobs and spur growth. He also said such payments can be made. ” safely”.
However, as more people are pushed into cashless payments now that the limit needs to be increased, the threat of card theft, along with anything in a stolen wallet or purse, is very high. real and cannot be ignored.
Notwithstanding the fact that banks and financial institutions will be able to keep up with our every move, it now appears that our personal security could also be compromised.