back to article 12% of UK don't carry cash

Two-thirds of you don't like using cash, and one in eight has stopped carrying it entirely, according to Barclays, which (unsurprisingly) reckon cards are the way of the future. The research was done by Populus who, at the behest of Barclays and Barclaycard, interviewed 2,000 people and discovered that the average UK wallet …

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Unhappy

12% of UK don't carry cash

Probably because 12% of UK doesn't have any cash to carry around.

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Holmes

Advantages of cash...

- Almost universally accepted in the UK.

- Quick to use.

- Retailers don't need a terminal or have to give the bank a percentage.

- You can take payments anywhere.

- You can easily check your balance.

- Banks and governments dislike it.

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Anonymous Coward

-Barman doesn't get arsey.

At either having to take card for a round.

Or give cashback to stop the above happening every. single. round.

My local doesn't have a phone line, let alone a card reader to connect to it.

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Anonymous Coward

Also ...

... without cash, how do you lend someone a tenner if they're a bit brassic?

And how are charity shops and jumble sales going to work without cash? And do 12% of people really not pop into a newsagents for a bar of chocolate?

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Headmaster

... brassic?

Here, let me fix that for you ...

boracic lint = skint

http://www.cockneyrhymingslang.co.uk/slang/boracic_lint

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Go

Re: Advantages of cash...

- and when you loose is it is gone forever.

No amount of phone calls to treasury will cancel your banknotes and issue you with new ones at no cost to you.

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Pint

If I lose any cash

It's not gone forever... someone will find it and good luck to them. I never carry enough cash that I would really miss if lost anyway, just enough to buy some food and a couple of pints if required.

Sure if I lose my wallet with multiple bank and credit cards in it, I can spend hours on end to get them cancelled and I'll still have to wait a couple of days minimum before I can pay for anything. Considering all the related hassle it could be less trouble losing a tenner or two than a credit card.

That's not even considering the chances of fraud if some shyster finds my cards, or if they got nicked in the first place.

On the whole, I have a simpler solution i.e. not lose my stuff

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Anonymous Coward

- How are you going to pay people to do foreigners?

- Sometimes one can't fix just fix their computer in return.

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Anonymous Coward

Using cash also keeps people employed

The second largest private employer on the planet is mainly concerned with moving real money around.

Oh and using cash leaves more money in the retailers wallet as there aren't all those nasty fees taken off the top of every transaction.

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FAIL

except

Have you tried to buy an airline ticket, car, theatre or concert tickets or any one of a host of other items with cash. Probably not because you would realise that its rarely possible to do it.

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Anonymous Coward

Thanks but ...

... times have changed, and now "brassic" is just as acceptable. You'll find that a) English changes over time, and that b) formal definitions of informal language are the height of tardery.

Here's my lame internet dictionary reference:

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/brassic

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@Bluenose (Impulse vs. planned purchases)

"Have you tried to buy an airline ticket, car, theatre or concert tickets or any one of a host of other items with cash. Probably not because you would realise that its rarely possible to do it."

Which has absolutely nothing to do with me using cash or not on a daily basis. I'm certain that there are people out there that just get it into their head to buy a car in the morning and do so before tea time, but for most of us, we know when we're going to be making any of those purchases in advance. So we can still use cash for our daily life if we so choose.

-d

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Not according to the OED (Kindle edition)

We speak British English though as it happens it also not in the Kindle's US dictionary at all.

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WTF?

@Bluenose re: except

"Have you tried to buy an airline ticket, car, theatre or concert tickets or any one of a host of other items with cash. Probably not because you would realise that its rarely possible to do it."

Airline ticket: yes, tried and succeeded several times (but usually use a card)

Car: yes, tried and succeeded several times (but more often write cheque; used card just once)

concert tickets:yes, cash works fine for more than 50% of the concerts I go to

theatre tickets: yes, cash works fine for more than 50% of my theatre visits.

host of other items: well, I don't buy my fixed line phone service, my internet access, my electricity, my domestic gas, my life assurance, my tv license, my water rates, or my council rates with cash - direct debit is much more convenient; but cards are pretty useless for any of those. And I don't do internet shopping with cash (it would be difficult), and tend to do car insurance, car tax, tv licence with cards. When I was paying into a private pension fund, I did that by direct debit for regular payments and used a card only for one-off payments. Tube tickets - used a card for Oyster automatic topup; train tickets - cash or card depending on how much.

Apart from internet shopping, my main uses of card are paying for restaurant, meals, restocking the booze cupboard, and supermarket shopping if I'm buying a lot, and car hire when not in the UK (where my car lives).

"rarely possible"??? Rubbish, all the things you named can easily be bought with cash.

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Anonymous Coward

Security?

"44 per cent of them now know that the lines represent contactless payment, and 65 per cent are aware that cards in general are capable of such a thing."

I wonder what the percentage is for people (rightly) concerned about security and privacy issues with said cards. 'Contactless' implies 'remotely' you know.

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What security concerns?

What like....the maximum of a couple of hundred pounds before it's useless

the fact that I DON'T have to type my PIN in exactly the sort of establishments where it's most likely, thus meaning there is NO chance that someone will steal it when using contacless, and thus meaning they can't go around spending thousands

I'd love to see how long it takes for somebody to rack up a significant 'steal' at 15 quid a time

And I haven't yet managed to get my Contactless card to work a centimetre from the reader...what with the fact that my wallet is thicker than both air and 1cm, good luck to anyone stealing my information by brushing by....that leaves....oh, exactly the same hardware potential as Chip & Pin or mag stripe

And b******s is cash more secure, I would be willing to wager 100x more people could successfully steal a wallet than steal credit card details

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Anonymous Coward

Win that bet, and still lose more.

You only need a couple blokes to filch hundreds of millions of credit card details. Heck you might find them for free in the pub, on a commuter train, what-have-you. Hauling cash on the other hand, is bloody hard work.

The big advantage with cash is that it's easy to count; you know exactly what you've got and if anything goes wrong you know exactly how much you lost. That determinism brings not security, but certainty.

The more indirection you introduce, the fuzzier it gets. If that's what you want, well, you get the paper trail for free. As with all things privacy, that sort of thing only starts to hurt when it's far too late to do anything about it. And then you'll find that yes, you did have something to hide after all.

Kudos for bringing up less security ("no need for pin") as an advantage to the electronic system though. I don't need to type a pin for cash either, and I never have to wonder just how much is left on the card. So what's the killer advantage of a plastic card that can be zapped with very little effort?

On a tangentian note: The crooks that run the Dutch national public transport RFID card scheme found that people figured out how to break wide open the mifare classic chips used --but declined to replace them as being "too expensive" well after the oyster card had silently been upgraded from the exact same chip to a better one-- and that disabled suspected-tampered-with cards were easily re-enabled. So they're proposing to beef up the terminals a wee bit and zap suspect cards dead. This appears to be very little effort to upgrade on a standard reader. I'm just waiting for the havoc rogue software is going to cause there. And of course it'll be the customer's fault again, so no redress, and if it accidentally the whole economy, er, your banking cards, well, no skin off their nose.

Anybody check whether, how, and at what cost you might recover monies left on a card that you no longer can use because of theft or loss or breakage? The above PT guys force you onto a card, force large reserves be kept, make the card unusable after five years tops (and sometimes deliver broken cards from the get go), and charge through the nose to recover credit through a paper-bound(!) slow-boat-to-china process clearly designed to make sure people don't bother. They're making^Wstealing quite a lot of money this way (tens of millions euros the last year already from a system that hasn't even been fully deployed yet) so it's easy to see why they like it. But why would I like it? I don't see it. In fact, it's hard to see upsides that don't taste like self-delusion.

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Bronze badge
Alert

Quick

Prepare the tinfoil wallets, although on a serious note as soon as I get one of these cards I am going to get a wallet that helps prevent such things.

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Trollface

arent cards normally in a wallet?

That would mean they would be stolen and walla there are your card details

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FAIL

Not quite.

Oyster cards had the same said about them. I can tell you that the first revisions were easy to clone, fake and edit and it was only because someone decided to reveal their techniques (against legal advice not to) that we actually KNOW that. Hell, I set up a MiFare-based system in the school I work in - I can tag in and out of the premises with my Oyster card - so the readers, writers, and cards are already "commodity" hardware which means that, like mag-stripe readers, the criminals have working examples to hack to their heart content.

Hell, the "chip-and-pin" system was supposed to be infallible - that's why you *still* get card skimmers on ATM's - they are STILL reading the details off the card. And just because it's short-range for YOU on a standard reader doesn't mean that NO-ONE else can read it. RFID passports have a very similar technology and it's been demonstrated that you can read them from a comfortable distance with any sort of aerial and a decent RFID scanner. Hell, there are people hacking into Bluetooth enabled cars from streets away now to set off the alarms so that people leave them unsecured and then they can walk up and take them (my garage could read data from any OBD car with Bluetooth, for instance).

Technically, even Wifi is only "short-range" but with a cantenna you can extend it to tens of kilometres. Bluetooth can be picked up from across the street without having to even try. Radio technology is, by definition, broadcasting whenever it's powered. The only difference with RFID is that it relies on being in range of an electromagnetic field to power itself and then just broadcasts normal radio. The RFID might only be powered in a short distance, but the resulting radio broadcast is no different to any other.

You *can* even power RFID technology from a remote location, that's already been proved with the passport-hacks (where it's possible to sit in an airport lounge and just read everybody's passport as they walk past, without having anything on you that's obviously suspicious), but as long as the radio is powered, then the resulting signal can be picked up by anyone pointing an antenna at that point (hey - how often do you check surrounding buildings for aerials/dishes pointed in the direction of cashpoints / wireless-retailers that you use? - even if you need to be within an inch to power the RFID device, the signal it sends is readable from miles away if you have the right aerial aimed at the reader).

The cost limit is neither here nor there. There is infinitely more mischief in having your card rescinded than in the amount they can steal from it - and £10 is £10 and if you're planning to "mug" someone, whether via real or virtual means, it's all profit and it just means you target more people at smaller transactions to avoid detection (and thus your chances of being hit go up - and the most likely way to do so is to point an aerial at a reader in a very busy area that gets lots of contactless plonkers all thinking they are safe. But your card(s) being cancelled for a few days because of rogue payments means that 88% of people would have NO way to pay for everyday items, if this articles headline is correct. And there are truly some people who don't even want the possibility of a £1 loss from their account, let alone a couple of hundred.

Contactless is wireless. Treat it the same, because the hackers do and have demonstrated examples of doing just what you say there is "no chance" of, including in public streets. If you really want to have each card that's affected cancelled until you've received the bank's "tick here to say you authorised this transaction" sheet through the post, that's fine.

Some people, though, research this things and find out exactly what IS possible rather than what SHOULD or SHOULDN'T be possible. Hint: All version 1 Mifare (Oyster) cards can be cloned remotely with the capture of a single transaction and a few minutes of processing time. Think of that next time you put a few thousand pounds worth of Travelcard on them, or use them to buy stuff at the local newspaper stand (as is becoming popular). If you're a big user of PAYG to pay for products, you probably *won't* notice that £1.99 transaction every day until a few weeks down the road, if at all. But that's not the point. The point is that they don't NEED to be contactless at all - if you have to get within 1cm of the reader anyway, why not just have a physical contact system that *can't* be sniffed remotely?

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Flame

Not only that...

...but they've discontinued the use of paper tickets (strippenkart), so even casual visitors are forced to pay €10 (excluding any credit, natch) to buy a card that might only be used a couple of days.

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Anonymous Coward

re:ATM skimmers

in fairness to chip and pin, the skimmers are reading the details off the magstripe, not the chip. Cards will become a lot more secure once we can scrap that legacy.

Unfortunately, if we did that, UK cards wouldn't work in the US.

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FAIL

ATM skimmers again

Actually, no. I don't know who you're shilling for (there does seem to be the odd bankster around here), but it's been repeatedly reported including by el reg that EMV is broken and can be skimmed. It's been known for several years, in fact.

There do exist skimmers that snoop on the communication with the chip. Some of those things are smaller and harder to notice than the put-in-front magcard readers since they fit inside the card way, and don't even need a separate pin peeper. As in you really won't and couldn't have noticed they're there, and powered from inside the terminal they'll last longer to boot.

Of course, there's big money and politics riding on the thing now, just like it took far too long to get around to replacing magstripes. That's no reason not to admit that big payment has fscked up big, again. That's what you get for designing for function and thinking that with "standard due dilligence" you've covered all your security bases. Now the crooks say: All your base are belong to us. HA HA HA HA. Too bad it is AGAIN the consumer that gets to foot the bill.

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re:re:ATM Skimmers

quote: "Unfortunately, if we did that, UK cards wouldn't work in the US."

Don't blame the Americans - nor would they work in ATMs in much of Europe. My Euro debit card (on my Spanish bank account) has a word mag stripe, so I can't use it in most ATM's in Europe (that includes Spain - I'm not even sure that a damaged mag stripe lets a C&P card work in UK ATMs, there used to be something silly about reading the stripe to discover whether the card is C&P) until I get the bank to replace the card - which I have to collect from the bank branch in person (which seems a bit more secure than the setup for my UK debit card) which means I can't use it to get cash until I get back near where I'm based in winter - but I don't get problems in shops and restaurants if I want to use it, nor in car hire places, because they all disregard and connect to the chip.

So I think it's going to be a very long time before we can drop that mag stripe regardless of what the US does. We need the banks in countries where everyone but the banks uses the chip-and-pin capabilities of the cards to use those capabilities too. Somehow I doubt if banks in Greece will be able to afford new ATM tech any time soon.

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hows this a new idea?

Proximity payment card? thats one of those rfid cards?

hows that better than my visa debit card?

Shops get right irked when you use a card , as do the customers in the queue behind you. Putting an RFID chip on it isnt gonna fix that.

-------

In the building where i work if you wanna eat lunch you not only have to bring cash - you have to bring the right goddam change!!

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Go

@mark 63

Contactless payment with no authorisation for transactions under £15 GBP means no inserting card into a specific slot, no typing in a PIN number followed by an entry key, probably quicker than cash too.

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Silver badge

Re; @mark63

>with no authorisation

Which is why I shredded the one Barclays sent me.

15GBP isn't much but someone could knock up quite a charge before you realised it had gone missing. The bank would deny all liability for it's misuse, which in all fairness if you were stupid enough to accept the conditions of use they shold be able to as you've effectively lost cash.

It's like someone nicking fifteen quid off you then getting an automatic top up with another fifteen.

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Mushroom

If it's PIN-less

Why does it have to be contactless as well? It can still be a chip card inserted into a slot and pulled back out. If no PIN is required it will take the same time as contactless, without having any of the security issues that contactless has.

Of course, the whole point of this system is to have it without authorisation, the stated aim of the system is to replace cash. From the point of view of banks and governments, the whole point of it is to replace cash with a traceable transaction record.

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Anonymous Coward

I can beat that.

We had smart cards at a place I worked.

You took a tenner out the cash machine on site.

Then topped up the card using a machine that refused cash on a completely random basis (i've seen it take completely moth-eaten notes, yet refuse perfectly good ones), and was always slow to have its firmware updated when notes changed.

Then you paid with the smartcard.

You could also pay by plastic, but you got treated with absolute contempt for it.

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FAIL

contactless

its not the pin that takes the time

its not the swiping it that takes the time

its the connection line back to the bank or whatever the fuck it does in the background, so removing the swiping and the typing aint gonna solve it!

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Anonymous Coward

Not quite

I work for a large retailer and we expect a 2 second authorisation time which is about the same as typing your PIN. Anyway C&P cards were designed to intermittently self-auth (assuming you are creditworthy).

The thing that takes the time is the woman who packs away all her shopping with the sales assistant watching on and then thinks 'I need to pay' and spends ages rummaging around in a bag to find her card.

Anyway, where I live I don't think we'll see any retailers taking contactless in the near future.

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Facepalm

LOMBARD

"half of us discard pennies and tuppences as pointless, and a third have refused to buy cheap things for fear of breaking a note."

Wouldn't it be nice to have so much money that you can afford a complete lack of common sense.

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Happy

I discard all my coins...

... into a litre Maß at the end of the day and use the contents for the "fun fund" - as it usually has about £250 in it when full that translates as a rather splendid day/weekend out (or some techy wizard gadget).

Agree that pennies & twopences are pointless though, they dilute my litre of money :-)

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Big Brother

Cash?

Haven't seen any of that in years, Government takes it all in taxes etc before it gets to me

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Day

The government takes all of it?

You might want to talk to an accountant.

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Coat

RE: Day

Tempest appears to be paying the 100p rate of tax there, he's going to offset our pension fund losses, bank losses, and pay off the national debt just with his wage.

Tempest must be a pseudonym for Rupert Murdoch or Bill Gates?

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Paris Hilton

I'm in the minority then

I pay for all day to day purchases with cash including fuel and the weekly shop. But then again I don't have any debt unlike most people I know.

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Thumb Up

Me too!

just so much quicker!

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TWB

Re:I'm in the minority then

I agree with you that having no debt is a good thing - whatever some economist might argue - though I sometimes wonder if the UK economy is so reliant on debt now, that if we all cleared our debts tomorrow (somehow) it would collapse.

Well done paying off your mortgage* (if you had one) - 5 years to go for me....

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Minority...

I also don't have any debt, but i still use credit cards for 99% of spending because they're more convenient...

I get cashback on what i spend, only a small amount granted but i spend a lot on work expenses which get refunded by the company too so its effectively free money...

Interest free debt can also be a good thing, take out a card with say a 10k limit and a years interest free, do your normal purchasing on it until you reach the limit but instead of paying off the bill every month put that money into a savings account. At the end of the year, pay off the card and keep the interest you earned in the account.

I also finding counting out change, and carrying it around with me extremely inconvenient.

Similarly while some shops and customers behind you may get annoyed if you try to pay with a card, i have seen many situations where people paying with cash have attracted similar negative attention especially when counting out large numbers of small coins.

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Anonymous Coward

Inconvenience in the eye of the beholder

I spend time waiting in queue for a quick count of what's in the old wallet, so that I can easily optimise the transaction to encompass a minimum of coins and notes. That also means I get bigger change back and carry less coins. It averages to about one or two of each. In fact, it's more annoying to be out entirely than to have too much, as the latter is more easily fixable.

Over here they immediately banned one and two eurocents as "inconvenient" where elsewhere they're happily using them. Having lived elsewhere too, I found that making change with one and two cents works exactly the same as with ten and twenty cents, if on a slightly different scale, so foregoing the small stuff just means retailers get to round. Yay them, greedy buggers.

To me, handling cash is a basic skill that takes a little practice. But seeing the many, many people with deep credit card debts, I'd say that handling credit is much more treacherous and takes lots more discipline as well as practice, reading of Ts&Cs, wrangling credit card companies, and so on. Losing all your cash is painful but recoverable. Overspending on credit can land you into modern-day debt peonage that is much harder to recover from. Cash, in short, I see as simpler and therefore cheaper to me. Risks and all.

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Stop

Quicker?

Quicker to walk to the fuel kiosk and queue to pay cash than to just do it at the machine by the pump? I'm surprised.

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Paris Hilton

Cask is king

I have notes in a clip and coins in a coin tray. I don't really spend the coins and save them in a jar at the end of the day. Every few months I pay the coins in at the bank and buy 1oz silver coins with the money.

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Pint

Minority, yes. Alone, no.

The thing about common sense is that it is surprisingly uncommon.

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I hardy carry any cash...

just enough to be able to buy a Macdonalds or summat flakey from Greggs without the Wife spotting it on the statements....

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Silver badge

...and the rest of us drink

I try to not carry much cash because of it's astonishingly short half life if brought near a pub...

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FAIL

FAIL

I got one of these proximity cards from Barclays when my last card expired.

It's been a nightmare, as the Oystercard readers on London Underground think this card is a second Oystercard.

If this card in in your wallet with your Oystercard, you will not be let through the gates.

You will get an error, which when investigated by LU, is something like "You have presented 2 Oystercards, and the system cannot handle this scenario"

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Boffin

RE: FAIL

Isn't that just a shit implementation of card validation on the part of the Oyster system?

If you don't get a similar problem when using your bank card in a contactless fashion with an Oyster next to it then I'd have to infer "yes".

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Anonymous Coward

If so...

... then it's a system failure that's offloaded onto the customer. This is quite common with systems that try their level best to turn customers into cash cows.

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Anonymous Coward

Frequencies

Your contactless payment card is picked up by Oyster terminals? Really?

I carry three RFID cards in my wallet: the contactless payment card (which I never use), the office security card that gets me through the doors at work and the printing card that gets me my printouts at work. If I ever wave the wrong one at the reader nothing happens, not even a beep or failure light. I'm told this is because the differet systems work at different frequencies. So if what you say is true, your bank and Oyster are using the same frequency and presumably similar codes in order that the Oyster terminal would think your bank card was an Oyster card.

I know it's not beyond the bounds of credibility, but I'm still having trouble with it.

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