The Decline of Cash

There are plenty of Sci-Fi movies that depict a world in which everything is controlled by a single piece of technology. All transactions and communications are made through high-tech devices that once seemed far out of reach. These days, it’s starting to look more familiar. We already have smartphones that do most things for us, and a move towards completely digital currency doesn’t seem that far away.

Only eight percent of the world’s currency is in cash form. This change is happening for a number of reasons but primarily because it is just more efficient. International bank transfers can be completed in under ten minutes, and personal transfers will appear in your bank account almost immediately.

Removing physical money completely could also help to reduce some crimes. Muggings and thefts, for example, would be a lot more difficult if you couldn’t access any of the money without a pin number or fingerprint.

New technologies are paving the way for the digital payment age and cash is fast declining. Some of these technologies may be familiar, and you probably use some of them already, but there are others that you may not be aware of.

Contactless Payments

Contactless payments have taken off in a big way over the last few years. Most bank cards that are issued come with the feature. Although it is more efficient that cash payment, it offers less security because you do not need a pin number.

This is being dealt with in the form of contactless payments on smartphones. Fingerprint scanners are becoming more commonplace and when combined with contactless technology, you get an entirely safe payment method that only you can use. The only problem being that if you lose your phone, you’ve also lost your wallet as well.

Cryptocurrency

You may have heard of one of the most popular cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin. It made headlines when it was linked to the selling of illegal goods on the dark web. But Bitcoin isn’t the only cryptocurrency around, and they are not just used for criminal activity. Click here for more information on exactly how cryptocurrency works.  

Cryptocurrency itself is perfectly legal and is a good alternative for people that don’t want to use their bank details online. Lots of major companies including Amazon and Virgin Atlantic are now accepting cryptocurrency.

The Dangers of Digital Money

Unfortunately, as the world evolves, its criminals evolve with it. In recent years there has been stories of thefts from contactless cards. It is possible to set up card reading equipment and make transactions by walking close enough to somebody who has a contactless card in their pocket.

Cybercrime is also on the rise and governments are struggling to keep up with criminals. Ddos attacks have been used to bring down the systems of some of the biggest governments in the world. They work by flooding a network with huge amounts of traffic, crashing them completely. If all of our money was stored digitally, then an attack like this could disrupt the entire global financial system.

So, embrace the new technology, but be aware of it’s downfalls. And maybe keep a bit of cash under the mattress just in case.

About Will Chatham

Will Chatham is a Cyber Security Analyst, Ethical Hacker, and Penetration Tester at a federal data center in Asheville, NC. Since Netscape 2.0, he has worked in a wide array of environments including non-profit, corporate, small business, and government. His varied background, from developer to search engine optimizer to security professional, has helped him build a wide range of skills that help those with whom he works and teaches.
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