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COVID-19 and the Card: Can my ID make me sick?

May 14, 2020

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Life Safety   pandemic   RFID   Smart Card  



Kyle Fairfield
Kyle Fairfield

Author

Since 1997, Kyle has been successfully integrating card solutions into all kinds of projects, large and small. In his free time, he likes to....actually, scrap that. He has no free time.

COVID-19 and the Card:  Can my ID make me sick?

A couple observations:

 1) COVID-19 may last up to 3 days on plastics and 5 days on metal.
https://www.webmd.com/lung/how-long-covid-19-lives-on-surfaces

 2) Alcohol and Sanitizer with Alcohol kills the virus.

 

If you use mag stripe technology, the Virus transmission sequence would be:

1) Infected person coughs on plastic card and droplets form on the card.

2) Mag Stripe reader will receive the card and droplets can be transferred to the rubber rollers and metal mag head.  Contamination of the Mag Stripe reader is accomplished.

3) A new card comes in contact with the contaminated surfaces inside the Mag Stripe reader, receives the virus.

4) As card exits the reader, the card holder touches the card, then touches their face or nose.

 So, yes, theoretically, it's a risk, though tiny.  Many things have to go the "right" way in order for this to happen.


Based on this possibility, here is our recommendations:

1) Post signage around any Mag Stripe reader, clearly instructing the card holder to wash their hands before and after the reader is used, and to regularily clean their card with an alcohol wipe.

2) Run a alcohol-saturated cleaning card through the Reader once a day (several times a day during heavy use periods).  Need them?  Call us.

3) You should transition away from mag technology to contactless, seamless, hygienic, touch-less, wireless, technology.   You know who to call for that!

 

Will alcohol wipes damage my card?

No.  If you have a contact-chip card, you can use alcohol to clean that surface too!

 

Stay safe.





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