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No. of Recommendations: 16
neveragain,

You wrote, So what I want to know, what are they swiping that has my debit card number on it? How did they get my debit card number?

Magnetic tape was invented in 1928. The technology achieved wide adoption in the 1950s. The technology to read and write that magnetic strip has been around for nearly a century.

However there is still one application that uses it, despite all the drawbacks. And you can buy a portable, hand-held reader/writer from Amazon for $129. It has been made largely obsolete by optical recording technologies, where density is important; but banks have insisted on using because of all the existing infrastructure.

Anyone can read the data off of your debit card and anyone can clone your debit card with the necessary information. They don't even really need access to the original card, which is why hacking a merchant's servers is so lucrative. The contents of the strip are in plain text and they can substitute your information on a blank card. All they really need is your name, the account number, the expiration date and the CVV.

The simplicity and openness of the system is appalling from a security standpoint. And that is precisely why I don't like having a debit card.

- Joel
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