She has unknowingly left the barcode visible (which I’ve covered up), something even savvy travellers may commonly overlook.
The barcode contains basically all the information on the boarding pass, stored in a specially readable format.
You may think that airport computers are the only devices that can read this, but the truth is, anyone can read a barcode. There are dozens of online barcode readers that provide information based on a photo you upload.
In this case, I was able to retrieve all the passenger’s details without seeing the rest of the boarding card.
The text provided full name, flight number, route, booking reference, ticket number, frequent flyer number and more.
Accessing all this information is a lot easier than you may have thought, and there is a great risk associated with publishing uncensored images of boarding passes.
Not only can these details be used for identity theft purposes, but you can suffer major financial loss if someone were to use this method to take control of a frequent flyer account.
It’s easy to see just how revealing these seemingly innocent pictures can be.
In a social world where we want to share everything instantly on a global scale with Facebook or Instagram.
IDENTITY THEFT RISK IS REAL
Beware that the risk of identity theft is very high. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t post images of boarding passes at all — if you want to show off that hard-earned business or first class ticket to the world, just be sure to cover up or blur out any vital information.
A much safer idea is to share pictures of you drinking champagne in the lounge or on board the plane.
It’s much more than just a boarding card, so be smarter and please take care.