Keep Your Information Safe: RFID Blocking Gear Guide
The days of the George Costanza wallet are numbered. Technology and innovation have lead to the rise of the smartphone and the decreased need to have cash on hand. Phones are now equipped with numerous apps such as Venmo, Apple Pay, and PayPal and with cashless transactions at your fingertips. The need to carry cash and multiple credit cards is quickly becoming antiquated. Yet, there are a few key items that are needed with you including a driver’s license, credit or debit card, and even membership cards. To ensure you’re always prepared a slim wallet is the solution for functional, comfortable, and minimalistic daily carry.
No matter if you are on the road for business or pleasure, thieves will often prey upon those who are not in familiar surroundings. In order to keep your trip going smoothly, there are plenty of countermeasures that you can take to keep your valuables safe from theft.
During our travels, we have seen unfortunate incidents happen that range from swiped bags to pickpocketing. These professionals of misdirection can be very hard to spot. You probably wouldn’t realize that you’ve been pickpocketed until they were a few blocks away from you at best.
In this day and age, you also need to be cognizant of electronic theft. We enjoy how technology makes our lives more convenient, but with those advances also come some vulnerabilities. Our passports and many credit cards and driver’s licenses are now Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) enabled. RFID is a short-distance electro-magnetic method for transmitting data. It is used for services such as contactless payments.
RFID-enabled credit cards wirelessly transmit personal information to credit card readers when making contactless payment transactions. Electronic data capturing devices, known as RFID skimmers, are made to steal data from RFID-enabled items by reading information from cards much like a credit card reader does, only that the information it reads is stored by the thief. A skimmer can easily take your personal information without you even realizing it.
Protecting yourself and your valuables from physical as well as electronic theft is the key to having problem free travels. The following selection of RFID-blocking equipped items can help deter and defend against theft. You don’t need to reserve the use of these protective items just for travel. Incorporating them into your daily routine will help keep you protected no matter where you go or where you are. EDC
Silk Undercover Money Belt
Highlights: This waist-worn under-clothing security solution comes in Eagle Creek’s soft-to-the-touch, washable, moisture-resistant, natural silk fabric. It features two zippered pockets for organization of money and documents you want to keep out of sight and a soft elastic waistband that tucks into the slip pocket on the back for tidiness. The interior features two zippered pockets for the organization of your Passport and money.
Our Opinion: If you’re going to have a money belt tucked away under your clothes, it might as well be as comfortable as you can make it and there isn’t a fabric that is much more comfortable than silk. Its construction from breathable, washable silk allows it to form fit to your body and not leave any obvious imprints under your clothes. We also find its sweat-resistant coated satin lining a nice feature as well.
RFIDsafe Tec Passport Wallet
Highlights: This streamlined RFIDsafe TEC passport wallet has a passport-holding compartment and four easy access card slots in an ultra lightweight, heat-welded design. It has a durable polyurethane exterior and a soft microfiber-lining interior.
Our Opinion: Clean, simple, gets the job done. If those attributes sound good to you, this is your passport wallet. We like just about everything about this wallet except that there isn’t a pen holder in it. When travelling to destinations where your passport is required, a pen is often required to fill out disembarkation and customs forms and such. The addition of a place to secure a pen would put this passport wallet over the top.
RFIDsafe Tec Trifold Wallet
Highlights: Easily sort your cards and cash into the ultra slim RFIDsafe TEC tri-fold wallet. Fits up to 10 cards with 2 easy access card slots and slot for notes; this wallet is lightweight and functional with a double snap closure. It is constructed of a durable Polyurethane exterior and a soft microfiber lined interior and is available in black or navy with red trim.
Our Opinion: This low profile wallet is as slim as it is simple. It can swallow up to a whopping 10 cards yet not feel like its bursting at the seams. The wallet stays closed with two snap buttons. We really like the look and feel of this wallet. If you’re looking for something simple and durable that can block RFID-theft, this wallet is well worth a look.
Coversafe X100 Anti-Theft RFID Blocking Waist Wallet
Highlights: Both RFID blocking and slash resistant, you can relax knowing your passport and other daily essentials are kept safely undercover and away from prying eyes in this secure waist wallet. The divided zippered main compartment fits your passport and other documents. The reverse side features a soft touch breathable backing.
Our Opinion: Another simple design from Pacsafe that gives you just want you need and nothing that you don’t. We like how this waist wallet protects from both electronic and physical theft. Its compartment is RFID-blocking and its waist strap made of slash resistant material.
RFID Money Belt
Highlights: Keeping your valuables close and out of sight can be safer than leaving them in your hotel’s safe. REI Co-op’s RFID Money Belt features a special liner that helps block unauthorized scanning of RFID chips inside passports, credit cards and debit cards. Its water-resistant, ripstop nylon construction stands up to wear and tear. It is available in black or taupe colors.
Our Opinion: Worn under your clothes, this money belt has two zippered compartments that help you hide away important cards and documents such as passports, cash, cards and airline tickets. A soft-brushed tricot material on the side facing your skin keeps it comfortable to wear.
RFID Passport Sleeve
Highlights: ThisThis is as simple as it gets. REI Co-ops’ RFID-blocking sleeve is constructed of a durable, water-resistant laminated foil. It is capable of blocking unauthorized scanning of the RFID chip found inside most passports.
Our Opinion: If you’re looking for a low-cost and low profile solution to protect your passport from RFID-theft, this paper-like passport sleeve just might be the ticket you’re looking for. Made of a laminated foil material, the sleeve should hold up pretty well but it cannot take the same abuse as a full-blown passport cover.
Qube Hip Pack
Highlights: Designed to accommodate your passport, cellphone and other daily necessities, the Qube includes anti-theft features including an RFID-protected pocket, locking zipper closure and an anti-blade fabric bottom. Its main compartment’s two-way zipper gives you easy access to your essentials. The hip pack has two interior compartments and a non-detachable webbing belt that is low profile and easy to adjust. Qube includes a key fob and removable tassel.
Our Opinion: In the 80s they were called fanny packs, but nowadays they’re called hip packs. Regardless of what you call it, we find that the Qube is large enough to hold all of our daily carried gear without feeling too big or boated. We like its anti-blade fabric bottom and RFID protected pocket.
Tokyo RFID Wallet
Highlights: The Tokyo RFID Wallet’s RFID protected pocket helps secure your information and a zipper closure keeps you from leaving anything behind. It features a durable water repellent coating that can shrug off light rain and a built-in six credit card slot panel allows for organization of your payment and membership cards. The interior of the wallet includes provisions for a zipper pocket, a mesh slip pocket large enough to fit most smartphones, elastic pen loop and plastic key retainer.
Our Opinion: Thanks to its zippered enclosure, we think this wallet is a safe bet for those looking for expanded storage space in their wallets. Large enough to hold a passport, six credit cards, identification, cash and more all while being protected from RFID skimmers, there isn’t more we’d ask for from a wallet.