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New jeans stop hackers getting in your trousers

Jeans contain fabric that shields the data that comes out of your credit cards

Andrew Griffin
Thursday 18 December 2014 17:21 GMT
The jeans in action
The jeans in action (Betabrand)

Your pocket is constantly broadcasting your data — which, if hackers seize on it, can be used to steal your credit-card data and other important information. That’s why new jeans, endorsed by computer security firm Norton, have been launched to keep the hackers getting into your trousers.

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) and near-field communication (NFC) chips in everything from your phone to your bank cards make it easy to pay using contactless technology, and is getting more popular. But the kit can also be hijacked by hackers, and such “digital pickpocketing” happens more than 10 million times a year, according to the makers of the jeans and blazer.

As the technology catches on — by 2015, around 70% of credit cards will be vulnerable to the attacks — the problem is likely to get even more widespread, which the jeans and blazer hope to solve.

Betabrand has successfully sold the jeans through crowdfunding — selling them for $151.20 each —already reaching 162% of its goal with 18 days left.

The jeans have two pockets, one in the front and one in the back, with fabric that blocks out RFID and NFC waves, which will stop any criminals looking to pickpocket the data, which can be done using a small reader, from getting in.

Norton’s role in the jeans is unclear, though it’s looks like they lent their name to the jeans to verify their wave-blocking credentials.

Betabrand is a new company that crowdfunds a range of products, some of which are prompted by customers’ input.

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