Carrying PIN Numbers with Credit Cards

  griffon 56 13:49 05 Apr 2007

Is what follows a fairly secure way to carry a PIN number around with a credit card, in, say, a wallet or handbag?

To include in a list of genuine telephone numbers two false ones in which digits in the first one refer to the positions of PIN digits hidden in the second one.

It seems to me that tho' not ultimately secure it would delay a thief or finder and make it more likely you'd have discovered and reported the loss or theft before your card could be used. What does everybody think please. The reason I ask is that advancing age makes me a member of the CRAFT Guild (Can't Remember a Fxxxxxg Thing)!

  Fellsider 13:56 05 Apr 2007

For a number of years I carried my PINs disguised similarly without any problems.

They were disguised within a phone list for work and fortunately the numbers in that list were 4 digit extension numbers.

Similarly you can 'hide' them in a list of ordinary numbers by using a genuine dialling code and exchange number, then the PIN

e.g. Barry Chalmers 0141 616 nnnn could be Barclaycard (BC) where nnnn is the PIN

Can I join the CRAFT Guild?

  The Belarussian Mafia 14:00 05 Apr 2007

If your wallet is stolen the cc company will ask where you kept your PIN. If you say in your wallet, guess what they're going to say regarding the dosh that has been ripped from your account?

Better to change the PIN to something that is uniquely memorable to you, such as someone's birthday, etc. Or try a lobotomy with a left frontal cortex transplant.

  Stuartli 14:31 05 Apr 2007

Never keep your PIN number(s), if you do have them written down, anywhere near your credit or debit card(s).

Best of all is to just remember the PIN number(s).

I have several cards, am nearer 70 than 60 and I don't have any problem remembering PIN numbers, which also applies to passwords for online accounts.

  skeletal 14:48 05 Apr 2007

Stuartli: I am impressed! I have about 40 assorted PIN numbers and passwords. Unfortunately I cannot remember them, particularly those that I only use occasionally.

Even worse, some things want a mix of numbers and letters, some with numbers first then letters, some the other way round, some 4 digits, some 6, some 10, so I can’t use the same ones.

Also, one of my bank’s web site crashed the other day and I had to set up a new profile; it would not accept my old details so all the “Mother’s maiden name”/”special date” etc etc had to be changed. So I now have to “remember” a completely new set of details just for that account.

Indeed, it is my view that banks (etc) are now making it so hard for a legitimate customer to log in, the only way most people can do it is to write the stuff down, ultimately defeating the object of the exercise (particularly as it is easy to defeat “chip and PIN” anyway).


  johndrew 15:06 05 Apr 2007

Make yourself a grid with letters on two sides. Remember a four letter word - something a bit unusual that it would be difficult for anyone to guess - or you could use initials, whatever provided it is four letters. Make sure those letters are on one side of the grid - not as a word, alphabetically if you prefer. Pick a further letter from the other side of the grid; under this letter and opposite your favourite `word` write your PIN. Fill the remaining spaces in the grid with random single digit numbers.

Hint: It helps security if there is more than one word available on each side of the grid. You only have to remember your letters anyway!!

Hope this helps.

  griffon 56 15:19 05 Apr 2007

Hi The Bel Maf,
Sorry, but I can't remember your name long enough to write it down in full! I suppose you could be disingenuous and say that your PIN wasn't carried in your wallet because it wouldn't be in the right order or in view on its own. However, good point.

Stuartli - fantastic what more can one say.

johndrew - nice idea, sort of similar to mine but more secure.

fellsider - it's a piece of duff to join the Guild. Just try to think what day it is when you wake up tomorrow, or, better still, what you just came into the room for. Thanks everybody, that settles it.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 15:37 05 Apr 2007

Not wishing to be cruel but if you cannot remember 4 digits you cannot be trusted with money. Simple but true.


  johndrew 16:02 05 Apr 2007

Not wishing to be cruel, but if you live long enough, you too will grow old and have memory problems.

  Stuartli 16:28 05 Apr 2007

I'm also lucky enough to be able to remember car registrations and telephone numbers; just a question of training the memory I suppose.

However, for some reason, it doesn't always apply to people's names...:-(

It can prove embarrassing if you meet someone you haven't seen for a while (usually in a different place to normal) and their Christian name slips your mind.

  skeletal 17:00 05 Apr 2007

GANDALF <|:-)>: I can’t remember whether I can be trusted with money or not.

Stuartli: So right! Even worse is that everyone always seems to remember me! I guess I must make some sort of impression...not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad!


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