The world of card payments has changed dramatically in recent years. Contactless payment is one of the most visible trends that is growing in popularity and use.

Contactless payments, which rely on near-field communication (NFC) technology, allow cardholders to avoid swiping or inserting a card into a reader. Rather, approaching an NFC reader allows the transaction to take place with ease and convenience.

The perceived security boost provided to both consumers and merchants is a driving force behind the increased popularity of contactless payments.

However, NFC payment technology is not without flaws, nor is it a security-free process. In this post, Fintech SmartOSC will share common problems of contactless payment security when paying and solutions to deal with them.


Contactless payment refers to a safe method for consumers to purchase goods or services using a debit, credit, smart card, or another payment device that employs radio frequency identification (RFID) technology and near-field communication (NFC).

This method of payment involves tapping a payment card or other device near a point-of-sale terminal equipped with contactless payment technology.


Although NFC technology provides greater security than more traditional card readers, consumers and businesses must be aware of potential issues. The most common are:

  1. Eavesdropping:

Contactless payments are completed by transmitting data from the cardholder to the card reader over the air. Criminals may be able to “listen in” on the transaction. If a hacker obtains the card or wallet’s information, they can create cloned cards. Mobile wallets, on the other hand, rely on near-field communication (NFC), which sends data over a short distance. It is still one of the most secure methods of conducting financial transactions.

  1. Forgery.

Another method an attacker can use to copy tag data is spoofing. Although similar to cloning, spoofing is distinguished by the fact that it is defined as duplicating tag data and transmitting it to a reader.

A simple example of spoofing would be replacing a price sticker in your local store with a cheaper one. The information gathered from the legitimate tag is transmitted to the reader by a different RFID tag that is not the original RFID tag.

  1. Jamming.

An attacker could also use jamming to obtain personal information. Jamming is the deliberate disruption of the air interface between a contactless payment and reader, which in theory disrupts communication between both devices.

This attack can be carried out by employing powerful transmitters that paralyze RFID tag communication while also producing frequency noise at the same frequency as the system in use.

  1. Compromised Devices, Passwords, and Cards.

All contactless payments require a card or a compatible smartphone wallet app, as well as a password. Theft of any of these could expose you to contactless payment fraud.

A similar thing could happen if your phone is lost or stolen, though the unauthorized user will usually need your password to complete the transaction.

  1. Wireless Copying. 

Wireless copying is the development of contactless bank card security and should serve as a warning to consumers. An attacker with a modified smartphone can collect personal data simply by standing next to the victim.

The account name, account number, expiry date, and the last ten transactions can all be viewed using these modified smartphones. The attacker accomplishes this by placing the smartphone within close proximity to the victim’s pocket and retrieving the data without the victim realizing they were targeted.


While consumers must be aware of the risks associated with contactless payments, organizations must also mitigate potential risks on their end. Even though NFC is as safe as using a credit card in a trusted environment, there are ways to increase the security of customer transactions. They are as follows:

  1. Multifactor authentication (MFA) is added to the transaction. Yes, mobile payments are supposed to be quick and easy for everyone, but staying secure requires a password, a digital signature, or some form of physical or biometric identification.
  2. Make certain that all transactions are encrypted.
  3. Using device-centric cryptography ensures that the information is unique to one device and cannot be shared with another. This prevents hackers from stealing the information and using it on their phones, reducing fraud.
  4. Maintaining compliance with all Payment Card Industry (PCI) Security Standards Council guidelines for credit card transactions, as well as all data privacy regulations for using and storing any information gathered.


While there are some security concerns with contactless payment security, the benefits of this technology far outweigh the risks. With proper precautions in place, banks can bring convenience and speed to contactless payments without worrying about safety or privacy.

Don’t forget to contact SmartOSC Fintech for more information on other technology issues!