Comments

SharkDecember 27, 2004 8:49 PM

Funny that to protect your privacy you'll have to give name/addr/SSN/DoB/phone #s/email to others. Not to mention that those web sites look like scam.

AnonymousDecember 28, 2004 12:21 PM

Paying with cash may be a paper-trail free option now, but cash as currency has a limited life. Electronic forms of payment will completely replace paper currency in the not-too-distant future.

I'm guessing that pre-paid debit cards (read: gift cards) will be the way to go thereafter.

ChristopheDecember 29, 2004 8:58 AM

I'm not really sure that eCash will be replacing physical currency in the not-too-distant future. I really guess that the banks are currently too greedy to design a system which will be really interesting for the users (buyers & sellers). In France we have an "electronic wallet" system called Moneo and it was obviously designed looking at the potential profits rather than making the best tools for users. For instance there is no way to use Moneo between two people and the transactions are, of course, subject to a fee from the banks.

Add to this that many people are aware than Moneo leaves a trail while cash don't and I'll understand why I'm really sure that the coins and notes are still here for a while.

EricCJanuary 1, 2005 11:17 AM

#6. ... "If you have to use a supermarket shopping card, be sure to exchange it with your friends or with strangers."

I noted this when I read the posting on RISKS. How will this idea protect my privacy? It may give the supermarket improper data, but it will still be data about me. As for exchanging the card with a stranger, what if the mag strip has my personal data on it, as opposed to just an account ID? My first (and only) supermarket card was mailed from headquarters. There is no telling what information about me was on it--I shredded it and threw it away.

MortJanuary 2, 2005 9:39 AM

Many of the supermarket shopping cards don't have any personal information on them at all. You can tell because they are in a large stack next to the register and don't even have magnetic strips but bar codes on them. Makes it hard to encode info on them that way.....

pigletJanuary 5, 2005 10:43 AM

Mort, the cards needn't have information on them, their purpose is to identify you. The shop uses the bar code to find and upate your database file. Of course, those bar codes are easy to forge. A Swiss privacy activist provides forged cards to anybody who wants to stay anonymous and still profit from special offers ;-)

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