13. Magnetic Stripe Reader

Magnetic strips are usually found of the back of most credit cards, cheque guarantee cards, loyalty cards, membership cards etc.

magnetic stripe readerThe magnetic strip can hold personal details such as account number, and name. The strip can contain up to 60 characters, stored magnetically.

To read the data on the card, it is 'swiped' through a Magnetic Stripe Reader machine and the data is read and fed back to the computer.

  • Simple to use
  • Cheap to produce
  • Data can be altered if necessary
  • Security has been improved by the use of PIN numbers which must be entered into a machine to confirm that you are the rightful card owner
  • Very limited storage capacity for data
  • Data can be easily destroyed by strong magnetic fields
  • Not always secure as thieves can obtain the readers and read the data on the card.


challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you

Click on this link: Magnetic Stripe Reader