RFID in Malaysia part 1

last few months, I was indeed looking for jobs related to RFID.. but nobody give a damn a bout me.. maybe they are looking for engineering kind of people. Fine with it.. and why on earth do IT evangelist like me care about RFID ?

simply because it seems like getting hotter and bigger. I have talked to couple of people and they told me it is very old technology, well i agree but perhaps we should say it is expensive technology. We are waiting for the time when we can walk out of supermarket Giant without queing up at the payment counter.

Currently, RFID applications are:
1. Your car security controller. That is already RF.
2. Car imobilizer. -
3. MBF credit cards - Visa Wave (it is RFID)

What we can do now is to do transaction with the credit card without given the card to the cashier for security reason. They might swap it twice or copy the details.

The cards which I received from MBF has three features:
1. Visa Wave (only applies to Visa card) - RFID technology
2. EMV - Europe -Master-Visa. According to the web site, this is a joint program between Master card and Visa card where they established standard of encryption for the chip. Making it harder for duplication in case of stolen card. But I don't think this security feature applies as far as e-commerce transaction.
3. Countdown initiatives - It is actually a mechant program. The name is catchy though becoz it gives impression about hype and that something is going to happen when I thought it already happened.

But despite being so high tech, shortfalls still persist. One of it is the customer service.

I received the cards via Post Laju, which is good because it solves all the hassles (car petrol, queing) including card activations. yes, I strongly believe that since they embarked on this totally non-intervention program where there won't be any personnel from MBF cards to call you up and check with you "Sir, have you received your cards. Pls when you do, call us for activation.." Otherwise, they wasted the Post Laju cost.

So in another words, this act sort of empowers the following services:
1. That Post Laju is indeed reliable and secure. (MOU between Post Laju and MBF cards have been signed where Post Laju will bear all cost in case of security breach)
2. EMV is powerful. (Not really, EMV is only meant to prevent credit card duplication)
3. The automation process is realiable and proven. (This is quite subjective but congratulation to them)

Anyhow, I still find it risky to use the card directly, as I was looking for the appropriate customer service number to call, I wonder that "why don't they also include MSN, Yahoo, ICQ or SKYPE" service as part of the customer service ? I eventually sent them an email to customer.service@mbfcards.com

Also, they should have a VOIP driven global number so that anyone can contact them around the world. Perhaps the technology is not ready, because they need a lot of hunting line for that particular number. I am wondering... couldn't Asterisk solve the problems ?

1. Banks is not using a fully VOIP PBX yet ?
2. More RFID devices should be bubbling soon, this is good for embedded computing.
3. would the customer service email channel able to respond fast?
4. Banks reckon that credit facilities will give them big revenue.