"Smart Swipe" Protects Your Credit Card Info Online - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

"Smart Swipe" Protects Your Credit Card Info Online

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Identity theft can be a major threat to people making purchases. Now a new device promises to protect your credit card information.

Most online shoppers mistakenly believe using a credit card on the internet is safe, but that's not always true.

Daniel McCann is president of Netsecure Technologies, the company that makes the Smart Swipe. McCann says if your computer is infected with a virus or key logging malware, your credit card information may be at risk.

"Traditional internet security, SSL, is very good at protecting your information as it travels across the internet, but it does nothing to protect you as the info sits in your PC," McCann said.

That's where the Smart Swipe can help. It's fairly easy to set up - just install the software and plug in the USB cable to your PC.

"What the Smart Swipe does is it encrypts and scrambles your card information inside the card device as you swipe your card and keeps it encrypted until it reaches the merchant," McCann explained.

Let's say you want to make a purchase on Amazon.com. When you see the payment screen, instead of entering your credit card number using the keyboard, Smart Swipe does it for you securely with a single swipe.

The software automatically recognizes where the credit card information goes and replaces the actual numbers with secure icons.

Of course, you still have to be careful who you do business with.

"The one thing it won't do is guarantee the merchant you're dealing with is reputable," McCann said.

We did have some trouble setting up the Smart Swipe, but after downloading the latest software we were up and running.

The Smart Swipe is not cheap. It costs about $90, but it may just give you peace of mind when you shop online.

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