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Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

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  • Thorn
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by moleprince View Post
    So I feel a little slow, but I just now stumbled across a Coke machine in the next building over at work that takes credit cards. There isn't any wireline connection that we could find, which would point towards a cellular uplink instead. Does anyone know of any vulnerability studies on these vending machines? I'm frankly a bit dubious.
    I don't know of any vulnerability studies, but yes, they are cellular.

    [USA Technologies]'s e-Port hardware, which can be installed in vending machines, handles credit card processing, tracks inventory and monitors the "health and welfare" of the machines, alerting technicians in case of trouble.

    The device, used by customers including Motorola and Reebok, includes a general packet radio service cellular connection.
    http://www.infoworld.com/article/07/...20APPLICATIONS

    For an overview of the system, look at the USA Technologies ePort page.

    EDIT: Additional info:

    According to the hardware page the device "Supports a variety of networking interfaces including wireless GSM & Ethernet."
    Last edited by Thorn; May 14, 2008, 06:44.

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  • moleprince
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    So I feel a little slow, but I just now stumbled across a Coke machine in the next building over at work that takes credit cards. There isn't any wireline connection that we could find, which would point towards a cellular uplink instead. Does anyone know of any vulnerability studies on these vending machines? I'm frankly a bit dubious.

    Leave a comment:


  • A
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by moleprince View Post
    Moreover, would you rather write "require photo ID" on the card instead of signing it to add another [or at least a different and maybe slightly more secure] authentication factor, at the cost of increased visibility and divulging more information?
    As other have talked about, this is actually not a valid substitution for signing your card. From the Rules for Visa Merchants: "An unsigned card is considered invalid and should not be accepted."* It then goes on to instruct the merchant to check ID and then watch you sign it, checking the signature against the signature on the ID. "If the cardholder refuses to sign the card, and you accept it, you may end up with financial liability for the transaction should the cardholder later dispute the charge." There is a nice section about how writing See ID rather then signing does little to no good to combat fraud.

    THAT is the only time a merchant can REQUIRE a photo ID as a condition of using a Visa card. From the same page: "Although Visa rules do not preclude merchants from asking for cardholder ID, merchants cannot make an ID a condition of acceptance. Therefore, merchants cannot refuse to complete a purchase transaction because a cardholder refuses to provide ID. Visa believes merchants should not ask for ID as part of their regular card acceptance procedures."

    I'm a firm believer that as long as I am not purchasing anything that, by law, requires an age verification via government ID, I do not show any ID to any merchant. I've politely declined many requests for ID when purchasing items with a Visa, from a pack of gum all the way up to a multiple hundred dollar purchase. After calmly explaining that requiring photo ID is against the agreement they have with their merchant bank, they usually just say "Oh" or "Well with all of this identity theft ..." and then they complete the sale.

    My favorite is a local theater that both IDs for R rated films and to use a credit card when you purchase a ticket in person, but just behind the ticket booth they have an internet pickup/credit card purchase kiosk.

    I don't have any links handy to the Mastercard merchant agreement, but they do have this slick form that lets you tattle on merchants that require a minimum purchase, charge extra to use a Mastercard, required ID, or just flat out didn't take Mastercard. https://www.mastercard.com/us/person...iolations.html

    * Rules for Visa Merchants: http://usa.visa.com/download/merchan..._merchants.pdf

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  • Greyhatter
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by barry99705 View Post
    At least they have self checkouts. Our local Sam's usually has two open checkouts. Ever. They have 16 stations, and two open. What's up with that?
    I've been a Sam's club member since ours opened over a decade ago and I still can't get them to put in a cash only line. I can't even get them to put in a 10 items or fewer line! Funny thing is I only use credit on BIG ticket items which gives me the added warranty protection through the bank. What rips me is having to wait behind so many others for check and credit signatures and approval with ID when I skate right through with cash. I know I've come to the wrong store when I've learned the names of people in front or behind me when trying to get in and out of slow mo checkouts and back home.

    And while were on the subject, what's this about Sam's takes Discover only? Too bad I only carry Visa and Mastercards. Yea, yea, Sam's owns Novus, so what! Ok, so Sam's would loose 2 1/2% on others cards if they accepted them, so what! It's an accepted part of doing business. Grow up and get over it Sam's Club. It's hard enough to get them to take my cash in all those long lines. It must be a "bulk warehouse" mentality thing or something. And to think, I pay these asses to be a member? Duh?
    Last edited by Greyhatter; May 5, 2008, 17:30.

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  • shrdlu
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by streaker69 View Post
    Self checkouts may be nice when you have a couple of things, but they get really annoying when you have some assjack there with an overflowing cartload and three screaming kids running around, and you're standing there with one or two things that you'd like to get out with quickly.
    Well, I always have at least half a cartload, but:

    o The only kid I have is 35, and she would never have made it to 15 if she'd been one of the little monsters you speak of.
    o The store I patronize has 6 self checkouts open at all times, and another 8 to open if it gets busy.
    o I shop on Wednesday or Thursday morning (or at least before 1PM), when the store is nearly empty.
    o I write all the produce codes down ahead of time, and so on, and so on...

    The sign says fifteen items or less, and I ignore it. I'm usually through in less time than people with less than one-fourth the stuff. The people in charge of monitoring those things are always happy to see me because I know what I'm doing, I do it, I'm pleasant, and I leave.

    On the other hand, I don't patronize places like Wal-muck (or its wholly owned subsidiary, Sam's), so I have no idea whether my experience equates to that. I believe that my grocery store actually enforces the 15 items or less for the self-checkouts on weekends, and evenings, when they're busy. Seems fair to me.

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  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Whatever they can do to get away with less people, they will do.

    You can go into Wal-Mart on the busiest shopping days of the year, yet they don't even have all the registers open. If they're not open then, when will they *ever* be open?!

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  • barry99705
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by streaker69 View Post
    Self checkouts may be nice when you have a couple of things, but they get really annoying when you have some assjack there with an overflowing cartload and three screaming kids running around, and you're standing there with one or two things that you'd like to get out with quickly.

    Or worse yet, stores that feel they don't need to schedule checkout people because they have Self Checkouts. The local Orange schedules maybe 2 checkout people on saturday morning and expects everyone for the most part to do self checkout.
    At least they have self checkouts. Our local Sam's usually has two open checkouts. Ever. They have 16 stations, and two open. What's up with that?

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  • streaker69
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by shrdlu View Post

    I usually use the self-checkout option any place it's offered, and it's partly to avoid that kind of nonsense.
    Self checkouts may be nice when you have a couple of things, but they get really annoying when you have some assjack there with an overflowing cartload and three screaming kids running around, and you're standing there with one or two things that you'd like to get out with quickly.

    Or worse yet, stores that feel they don't need to schedule checkout people because they have Self Checkouts. The local Orange schedules maybe 2 checkout people on saturday morning and expects everyone for the most part to do self checkout.

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  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by shrdlu View Post
    Here I'd say it depends on a couple of factors (at least for me). If they *know* they're going to write a check, and they have it mostly written before they get to the front, then more power to them. Plastic is evil. On the other hand, if they have to fumble around to find the checkbook, and find their ID, I usually start thinking about retroactive abortion.
    I should have clarified; the "fumble around for the checkbook" approach is what pisses me off.

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  • shrdlu
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    It's those damn Visa commercials where someone wants to pay for cash, and the entire store comes to a halt. Ha ha, funny. I hate those commercials! There is nothing wrong with paying with cash, yet they are trying to stigmatize it.
    Those commercials are moronic in any case. They're using the worst of the worst in them; the crazy RFID loaded cards that look like magic to Joe Sixpack.

    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    Now when people actually get out the checkbook to write a check, then I get mad. ;)
    Here I'd say it depends on a couple of factors (at least for me). If they *know* they're going to write a check, and they have it mostly written before they get to the front, then more power to them. Plastic is evil. On the other hand, if they have to fumble around to find the checkbook, and find their ID, I usually start thinking about retroactive abortion.

    I usually use the self-checkout option any place it's offered, and it's partly to avoid that kind of nonsense.

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  • Lowie
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by xor View Post
    Who do you know under 40 that actually carries cash anymore? :-)


    xor
    I do. And I'm well under 40. While the plastic can come in handy, it is amazing how much trouble cash can get you out of. And not to mention the savings you can make when purchasing goods and services from those who wish to avoid the taxman.

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  • moleprince
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    I'm with you about the fraud issue. There have only been a couple times they've dinged me on that, and every time it's been me spending. One of my banks started their trend tracking right before Christmas and froze my debit card over the weekend because of, surprise, a number of expensive PayPal purchases.

    I have my credit card signed with "require photo ID" and get asked for it surprisingly often, for which I always thank them.

    Usually I carry cash for three reasons:
    1- The two dollar cinema in town.
    2- Vending machines
    3- Leaving tips when I can't just write them from the card


    I hadn't realize that you could just cancel out of that zipcode screen or I probably would. I'll have to try that next time. I vaguely recall some way to actually show your card balance on the display if you did something bizarre like calling it a grocery gift card or something, but I haven't been able to reproduce that again.

    There was one time when I went to buy canned air from Office Depot for my buddy when he couldn't leave the house, and I was using his card and they nearly ID'd me because apparently you have to be over 18 to buy it lest you take it into an alley and huff it with your pre-teen friends or something. Bizarre.

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  • barry99705
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by streaker69 View Post
    Maybe I'm just ignorant of this as I don't fly much, but how can an Airline not take cash? After all, according to what's written on the money itself, it's Legal Tender for all debts public and private. How can they legally refuse it?
    They don't have to accept cash. There's no law saying they have to either. Here you go. As for the ask for id thing on the card, I've done this and had my card denied at a store because it wasn't signed.

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  • xor
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    It's those damn Visa commercials where someone wants to pay for cash, and the entire store comes to a halt. Ha ha, funny. I hate those commercials! There is nothing wrong with paying with cash, yet they are trying to stigmatize it.

    Now when people actually get out the checkbook to write a check, then I get mad. ;)
    Who do you know under 40 that actually carries cash anymore? :-)


    xor

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  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: Thoughts on Anonymity and Money

    It's those damn Visa commercials where someone wants to pay for cash, and the entire store comes to a halt. Ha ha, funny. I hate those commercials! There is nothing wrong with paying with cash, yet they are trying to stigmatize it.

    Now when people actually get out the checkbook to write a check, then I get mad. ;)

    Leave a comment:

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