2nd Oct 2017
FONT SIZE: A+ A-
Your boarding pass can be used to steal your identity
boarding pass

My dad shreds any envelopes or unwanted correspondence that has his name, address or any personal information. Admittedly, at first I thought he was being a bit paranoid, but his concern has passed down to me and I often (though not always) find myself doing the same thing.

Understandably, bank statements, credit card correspondence and any other financial fodder is fair game for the shredder, or at least the good old tear-it-to-bits treatment. And while that may make sense, I would nonchalantly throw away my boarding pass after a trip, until recently.

You’ll be amazed at what can be gleaned from the barcodes on your expired boarding pass.

Hackers and all manner of scammers can use it to find out your boarding number. This information, with an innocent sounding call from a ‘fake family member’ can be used to reveal your itinerary and seat number on a plane. Fraudsters can also access your frequent flyer details, discover how much you paid for your airfare and obtain the last four digits of your credit card number.

“The next time you’re thinking of throwing away a used boarding pass with a barcode on it, consider tossing the boarding pass into a document shredder instead. Two-dimensional barcodes and QR codes can hold a great deal of information, and the codes printed on airline boarding passes may allow someone to discover more about you, your future travel plans, and your frequent flyer account,” said Cybersecurity journalist Brian Krebs.

And don’t take photos of your boarding pass either, because if it appears online you could also be vulnerable to identity theft.

So, don’t just throw out your boarding passes – shred that piece of paper for your peace of mind.

Read more at BT

What do you do with your old boarding passes? Did you know that so much could be gleaned from your boarding pass?

RELATED ARTICLES





    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    Maggie
    2nd Oct 2017
    11:28am
    Presumably you would not throw out a boarding pass until you had used it. So what is the fuss then about someone finding out the number of a used seat? I do not see the connection.

    People post so much stuff on facebook and twitter that half the world can find out their itinerary anyhow! And,unless you are a VIP what stranger would be interested in your itinerary?

    The last four digits of a credit card number are not going to get anyone very far are they?

    Why are people constantly trying to frighten us and make us feel thoroughly insecure when there is no good reason for it? There's enough to worry about as it is.
    KSS
    2nd Oct 2017
    12:10pm
    Maggie it's not the information you can see that is the real issue here. It's the information in the bar code. People putting their boarding pass on Facebook haven been scammed as a result. The same goes for all tickets to concerts, opera house, etc for the same reasons.
    MarLin
    2nd Oct 2017
    1:45pm
    You must show used boarding passes to HCF if you want to re-activate your private health insurance after suspending it for overseas travel - so don't rip it up too early!
    CindyLou
    2nd Oct 2017
    4:12pm
    Absolutely agree re health insurance.
    Anonymous
    2nd Oct 2017
    6:46pm
    no - you can get a printout of your movements by visiting immigration dept
    CindyLou
    2nd Oct 2017
    8:08pm
    It's easier to show your boarding pass. Have done it, saved two months health insurance when overseas.
    Maggie
    2nd Oct 2017
    2:12pm
    KSS I respect your intentions, please don't get me wrong, but I fail to understand the claim that people have been scammed as a result of throwing boarding passes out. Please do give concrete verifiable examples of the kind of information, except possibly the next stops on a journey, and the last 4 digits of a credit card number, that can be gained and how exactly scams have been perpetrated. That sort of information would carry a lot more weight and if we need to be truly concerned, we will be careful.
    KSS
    2nd Oct 2017
    4:12pm
    Have a look at these:
    https://krebsonsecurity.com/2015/10/whats-in-a-boarding-pass-barcode-a-lot/

    http://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-advice/flights/boarding-pass-photo-experiment-that-should-make-every-traveller-nervous/news-story/be046e878c3866dd1bb9c5a1e81d3b37

    https://www.kaspersky.com/blog/dont-post-boarding-pass-online/10495/

    The point being that these barcodes can lead to identity theft by accessing your flight itinerary, personal information such as your phone number and going from there.
    CindyLou
    2nd Oct 2017
    4:19pm
    I destroy everything with my name or address on it...everything that has personal information.
    Anonymous
    2nd Oct 2017
    6:48pm
    so do I
    destroyed my birth certificate and passport the other day when I was feeling a bit paranoid
    think I'll do the same with my credit cards , driving licence and university degrees
    Rosret
    2nd Oct 2017
    7:47pm
    Very funny Raphael. That will cost you to replace them - and how will you prove you are you!
    CindyLou
    2nd Oct 2017
    8:11pm
    Obviously I only destroy paperwork I'm throwing out. But,in saying that I am mindful of the value to criminals of documents such as passports so I don't leave them in an obvious place in the home (burglars).


    Join YOURLifeChoices, it’s free

    • Receive our daily enewsletter
    • Enter competitions
    • Comment on articles