It might be tempting to snap a selfie of yourself with your boarding pass, especially if you are heading off to some cool, exotic location for a few weeks, but you might want to think twice about taking that photo and posting it online. Security experts warn that posting your boarding pass online can have dangerous ramifications.
What could possibly happen if you post your boarding pass online? We take a look at why this is so dangerous and some of the things that could happen to you if you do post it online.
A Boarding Pass is Just a Piece of Paper – Right? Wrong!
Don’t assume that a boarding pass is just a piece of paper that will allow you to board a plane. It is actually a piece of paper that contains detailed, personal information about you.
The barcodes on your boarding pass contain all types of information about you. The barcode, when scanned, may contain everything from your frequent flyer number/account to your credit card information, birth date and address.
Many people assume that because all this information is in barcode format, it isn’t easy to read. Unfortunately, they are wrong.
All it takes is a barcode reading software program and all that information can be decoded within a matter of seconds. Barcode reading software can be purchased online and easily downloaded.
When you post that boarding pass online, anyone who wants to can download the barcode reading software and gain access to your personal information. Once they access that information, they can do anything from use your credit card to change you flight.
Information can be Used to Drain Frequent Flyer Accounts
It might seem harmless if someone gains access to your frequent flyer account, but it can cause you a lot of problems especially if you fly often.
If you have a lot of frequent flyer points, people who gain access to your account can steal those points. All they have to do is add themselves onto your account as a family member then they can book hotels and flights using your frequent flyer points.
Pranksters can Cause Problems by Changing Flights
The barcode on your boarding pass can be used to gain access to your current flight information. If that information should fall into the hands of a prankster, it could cause you problems.
Pranksters, or anyone with malicious intent, can take the information they get off the boarding pass and make changes to your upcoming trip. This means you could arrive at the airport only to discover that someone cancelled your flight or changed the day you leave. You most likely wouldn’t discover this situation until you tried to check back in for your return flight, only to discover it was no longer in your name or cancelled.
You never know who could be looking at your boarding pass that you posted online. In an effort to avoid problems in the future, it is best to just not post your boarding pass online.