does anyone really sign their name?

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    Oct 04, 2014 4:19 AM GMT
    When you use your credit card on the credit card terminal where you swipe the card and then sign. I just do a squiggle in the box. Should I be worried that anyone could forge my squiggle? They obviously aren't validating it like they supposedly do with paper checks.
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    Oct 04, 2014 4:27 AM GMT
    No, I just do whatever, somethin like this
    squigle_no_lineal.png
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    Oct 04, 2014 4:28 AM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal saidWhen you use your credit card on the credit card terminal where you swipe the card and then sign. I just do a squiggle in the box. Should I be worried that anyone could forge my squiggle? They obviously aren't validating it like they supposedly do with paper checks.


    I think you're not so much proving your identity as agreeing to the terms. Supposedly 20 years ago a credit card company was automatically responsible for fraud; that may have changed for a while, but I think the bad press from security incidents has reaffirmed that.

    I do wonder about the paper checks; my own squiggle changes from day to day depending on things like the temperature and whether the cashier is talking to me, and I actually had some condescending words for my branch last time they tried to reject my signature (I was there in person with a photo ID, for crying out loud).

    I may be wrong for not being worried about my signature, but I think most security experts would agree that even a good signature is a lousy way of proving your identity. In any event, I don't think your signature will ever be the difference between you being the victim of identity theft and not. I used to write "see ID" on the back of my card in an attempt to introduce photo verification, but nobody even checks that any more. Most of the security work is done by pattern-matching and/or machine-learning algorithms at the credit card company's end these days.

    EDIT: It's not even necessarily "security" work; as much as anything, it's actuarial. The algorithms will be designed to keep loss from fraud under a threshold that is cost-effective counting prosecution and reimbursement.
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    Oct 04, 2014 4:43 AM GMT
    yetanotherphil saidSupposedly 20 years ago a credit card company was automatically responsible for fraud; that may have changed for a while, but I think the bad press from security incidents has reaffirmed that.

    They still are responsible for the fraud as far as I've experienced. 3 times in the last few years I've had my credit card number stolen and had fraudulent charges. One the credit card company caught because I'm in California and it was a charge to a Lowes hardware store in Pittsburgh ($800). The other time they didn't catch it because it was something that I'd likely buy, a laptop (but a very expensive one, over $2,000). The third time the malefactor did some exploratory charges on it in Mexico for less than $1.00. In all 3 instances they ate the charge. And sent me a new card immediately.

    This is why I rant about not using debit cards; I'd rather have fraudulent charges on my credit card that I can deal with and not have someone drain my checking account with a debit card.

    By the end of next year we should be seeing more chip credit card readers. I just got a chip card after being in Europe and not being able to use my regular (to me) magnetic swipe card.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/tomgroenfeldt/2014/06/23/more-secure-credit-cards-with-chips-coming-to-the-u-s/
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    Oct 04, 2014 4:48 AM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal said
    yetanotherphil saidSupposedly 20 years ago a credit card company was automatically responsible for fraud; that may have changed for a while, but I think the bad press from security incidents has reaffirmed that.

    They still are responsible for the fraud as far as I've experienced. 3 times in the last few years I've had my credit card number stolen and had fraudulent charges. One the credit card company caught because I'm in California and it was a charge to a Lowes hardware store in Pittsburgh ($800). The other time they didn't catch it because it was something that I'd likely buy, a laptop (but a very expensive one, over $2,000). The third time they malefactor did some exploratory charges on it in Mexico for less than $1.00. In all 3 instances they ate the charge. And sent me a new card immediately.

    This is why I rant about not using debit cards; I'd rather have fraudulent charges on my credit card that I can deal with and not have someone drain my checking account with a debit card.

    By the end of next year we should be seeing more chip credit card readers. I just got a chip card after being in Europe and not being able to use my regular (to me) magnetic swipe card.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/tomgroenfeldt/2014/06/23/more-secure-credit-cards-with-chips-coming-to-the-u-s/


    Good news on several counts. I do look forward to chips in most regards, though not knowing what type of chips they are, I'm a bit worried that they will all be of the RFID and/or NFC variety. I can't shake the feeling that those will be no better once having hundreds of millions of targets is too good for the hackers to pass up, and I hate the idea of having to use a faraday cage wallet just to keep my card from responding to broadcasts.
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    Oct 04, 2014 5:09 AM GMT
    Not rfid. That wouldn't make any sense. I'm guessing that the chip does some sort of encryption of the credit card number. Perhaps there's some sort of tiny cpu in the card that does the encryption, and it gets its power from the credit card terminal when you stick the card in. My grocery store has readers for the chip cards, which also has the swipe thing on the right. But the chip reader part isn't activated. You just stick the card in the slot and it goes in about 1/4th of the way, just enough for some contacts in the credit card terminal to make contact with the exposed metal contacts on the front of the card.
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    Oct 04, 2014 7:25 AM GMT
    I don't sign the back of my card. I just scribble that box. And on the terminals, I just "sign" my initials. It's not like the cashiers check your signature. You can sign it "mickey mouse" and they won't even notice. I find that most store ask for a photo ID instead. I think that's slightly more effective than a measly signature.
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    Oct 04, 2014 7:34 AM GMT
    On the back of my credit cards, I use a sharpie and write "CHECK ID".

    Rarely does my ID get checked.
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    Oct 04, 2014 2:44 PM GMT
    I do a big W and some Ls, then a huge capital H, and a lower case g.

    in walmart once, on the pad, i didn't sign anything, but rather drew a house with a sun above it. it accepted it.

    the only place anymore that i've had my signature actually checked is the post office.
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    Oct 04, 2014 2:50 PM GMT
    I sign using my noble title.
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    Oct 04, 2014 4:59 PM GMT
    willular saidI do a big W and some Ls, then a huge capital H, and a lower case g.
    in walmart once, on the pad, i didn't sign anything, but rather drew a house with a sun above it. it accepted it.
    the only place anymore that i've had my signature actually checked is the post office.

    I like the idea of a picture. I think I'll start drawing a smiley face.
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    Oct 04, 2014 5:20 PM GMT
    its only as good as the person's word:
    someone wrote a check,
    the recipient cashed it on his cell phone right there,
    did not even bother to sign the back,
    Put the check in the shredder.

    Both parties were sent confirming emails to that the transaction was in process.

    nice if credit cards worked like that.
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    Oct 04, 2014 5:50 PM GMT
    The way that they have most of those pads set up, its impossible to write anyway. Whether the signature screen or the PIN screen pops up is often due to the banks contract with the merchant. (For years, my business debit card PIN wouldn't work in ANY store.) The bank usually gets to charge the merchant an extra 35 cents or so for a "non pin" transaction.
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    Oct 04, 2014 5:54 PM GMT
    All the card readers i encounter are chip enabled and require the use of a PIN code. I cannot recall the last time i had to sign one.

    But I do try to write legibly on the electronic pads they have when parcels are delivered.
  • Apparition

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    Oct 05, 2014 2:14 AM GMT
    Upper_Cdn saidAll the card readers i encounter are chip enabled and require the use of a PIN code. I cannot recall the last time i had to sign one.

    But I do try to write legibly on the electronic pads they have when parcels are delivered.


    but you live in the first world, where they have real debit cards and credit cards, not america where people take cheques and sign for things.
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    Oct 05, 2014 3:08 AM GMT
    mindgarden saidThe way that they have most of those pads set up, its impossible to write anyway.

    That's exactly what made me start this thread; I was thinking, "Who the heck can really sign their name on these things?" I need a place to rest the heel of my hand and there isn't one.
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    Oct 05, 2014 3:10 AM GMT
    Upper_Cdn saidAll the card readers i encounter are chip enabled and require the use of a PIN code.

    Yeah, we'll you're talking to a bunch of day-late-and-a-dollar-short Americans here. Everyone else is using either chips or pins, or both, but not us!
  • ThatSwimmerGu...

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    Oct 05, 2014 4:13 AM GMT
    Line
  • conservativej...

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    Oct 05, 2014 8:31 PM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal saidWhen you use your credit card on the credit card terminal where you swipe the card and then sign. I just do a squiggle in the box. Should I be worried that anyone could forge my squiggle? They obviously aren't validating it like they supposedly do with paper checks.


    That depends on how you squiggle. :-)