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RFID: What is it and why is it important?

RFID: What is it and why is it important?

If you’ve ever felt a bit insecure about having your information stolen—whether that’s your Social Security number, bank account or credit card information, or sensitive personal details—you’re not alone. Ensuring that your personal financial information is kept safe and protected should be a top priority. That’s why we make sure our wallets are fully RFID blocking. We strive to allow you to have peace of mind when it comes to the way you carry your cards. Of course, not everyone has even heard of RFID or its potential negative implications.

RFID: What it is and why you’re at risk

So, what exactly is RFID? It stands for Radio Frequency Identification and it refers to the way that people—not experienced hackers, but regular people—can access your credit card information just by using a completely legal scanner and standing within a few feet of you. These scanners can be bought in electronics stores, and some smartphones even have the same technology as a scanner. You do not have to have any cards out or exposed in order for this scanning to take place.

This is why we at Andar provide wallets with full RFID protection. Some will say that simply lining your wallet or wrapping your cards in a few layers of tinfoil will provide the same level of protection—and while this can be true, as long as you have enough layers, no one wants to line their wallet or purse with unsightly, noisy tinfoil (not to mention the tinfoil will inevitably wear out, causing the need for frequent replacement). Our wallets provide you with full peace of mind when it comes to the risk of RFID scanning.

Can I still use my Andar wallet to hold my Access or Proximity card?

A question we frequently receive along these lines is whether you can still scan an Access or Proximity card (these types of cards also include hotel key cards or work ID cards) within our RFID-blocking wallets. The answer to this is yes and no. Our wallets are limited to blocking cards with 10MHz to 3000MHz frequencies. Debit and credit cards typically have a frequency of 13.56MHz, so they are unable to be scanned wirelessly inside the wallet. Access or Proximity cards, however, typically operate at a frequency of 125KHz—a number well outside the range of the wallet’s RFID-blocking frequencies. So, the majority of the time, your Access or Proximity card should be able to operate just fine while being used within one of our wallets. However, we can’t speak for every situation, so make sure you know the frequency your Access or Proximity card runs at before you commit to leaving your card within your wallet to gain entry.

What about public transportation cards?

Additionally, many ask whether a Metro or Bus card is blocked by our wallets. These types of cards run at the same frequency (13.56MHz) as debit and credit cards, so they’ll need to be removed from your wallet before they can be used.

Are all Andar products RFID blocking?

A last question we get on the subject is whether all our products come with full RFID protection. While the vast majority of our wallets do, The Finn and The Leo are smaller wallets that are not RFID blocking. Additionally, our Porter and Fitz phone cases contain card slots that are not RFID protected. All of these would be good options for Metro or Bus cards, or to hold an Access or Proximity card if you’re not sure of its frequency.

Protect with the best

While the risk of losing your financial information to an RFID scanner may be low, you should want nothing but the best protection for your sensitive information. That’s why we offer fully protected, RFID-blocking wallets. Check out our range of wallets here.