When it comes to train tickets, my local train company Southern has a “buy before you board” policy. However, at a number of stations, e.g. Bishopstone or Southease, there is no means to buy a ticket, either in the form of a ticket office or a machine.
For a while I have been concerned that a lack of ticket purchasing facilities may lead to passengers be charged unfair penalty fares, so I asked Southern to install at least one ticket machine there. They said no.
Anyone who commutes on a regular basis is familiar with an inspector coming along to check the tickets. But could you become a victim of crime by presenting that ticket? Smart payment methods are not immune to scams.
Criminals may be quick to take advantage of gaps in new systems and the public’s unfamiliarity with the risks.
In a recent post I highlighted potential crimes that could be carried out by criminals posing as ticket inspectors on public transport.
- Theft of credit stored on smartcards, e.g. Oyster.
- Theft of bank details stored on contactless bank/credit cards.
- Theft of personal data from smartcards and contactless cards, e.g. for identity theft.
- Assault (sexual or otherwise) of vulnerable passengers at quiet stations.
Most of us have heard of a “Facebook Party” where a teenager posts details on social media and finds they have more guests than they anticipated. One such party in a £1 million Highgate home ended up with 600 guests and the property being trashed.
Another party invitation in Haren, Netherlands, despite being cancelled in advance and police issuing warnings not to come, had 3,000 visitors and turned into a riot.