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Got this in a recent email. Not sure how accurate it is but its worth a read.

Staying at a Hotel ?? - this is worth reading
Please read through

Kinda sorta makes perfect sense.....

.Always take a small magnet on your holiday, they come in handy at the end of it.
Thought you all needed to know this

This is pretty good info. Never even thought about key cards containing anything other than an access code for the room!


Ever wonder what is on your magnetic key card?

a. Customer's name
B. Customer's partial home address
c. Hotel room number
d. Check-in date and out dates
e. Customer's credit card number and expiration date!

When you turn them in to the front desk your personal information is there for any employee to access by simply scanning the card in the hotel scanner.. An employee can take a hand full of cards home and using a scanning device, access the information onto a laptop computer and go shopping at your expense.

Simply put, hotels do not erase the information on these cards until an employee reissues the card to the next hotel guest. At that time, the new guest's information is electronically 'overwritten' on the card and the previous guest's information is erased in the overwriting process.

But until the card is rewritten for the next guest, it usually is kept in a drawer at the front desk with YOUR INFORMATION ON IT!

The bottom line is: Keep the cards, take them home with you, or destroy them. NEVER leave them behind in the room or room wastebasket, and NEVER turn them into the front desk when you check out of a room. They will not charge you for the card (it's illegal) and you'll be sure you are not leaving a lot of valuable personal information on it that could be easily lifted off with any simple scanning device card reader.

For the same reason, if you arrive at the airport and discover you still have the card key in your pocket, do not toss it in an airport trash basket. Take it home and destroy it by cutting it up, especially through the electronic information strip!

If you have a small magnet, pass it across the magnetic strip several times. Then try it in the door, it will not work. It erases everything on the card.

Information courtesy of: Metropolitan Police Service.

PLEASE FORWARD to friends and family .
Sorry numbers this is an old urban myth that's been doing the rounds for some time. It does not originate in the Met and is complete bollocks.
I've worked in hotels for a few years and I've got to agree with woodentop, the card myth is bollocks!!!! There would be a certain amount of information kept on the database at the front desk but anyone can request for their information to be deleted. Get this in writing and if any issues were to arise the hotel wouldn't have a leg to stand on. Also never let your credit card out of sight, it takes all of 2 seconds to swipe and clone!!!

I'd be more worried about this sort of thing, it does happen!!!!
No need to be sorry WT. Better safe than sorry.
I work in a hotel now, as far as im aware i can agree with the others as it being complete pish. We have no access to the card. To programme it weve a separate program to our check in system.

We just type in the room number the check in system has given us and then pop them in the card writer. Its just a writer not a reader weve no access to the info on the card.
Yea Lads,

The key card system is generic, and cards are authorised as required to the specific room number - no other details stored on the cards. Cards can be pre authorised to just one access(ie for a room service call) or specific for the booking of the room (12 noon - 12 noon the following day)

Some FOH systems are conected to the card issuing machine, so when a card is issued the system will log that the card was issued to Mr. Smith on date/time for a period of 24 hrs etc.

The cards will however hold information on time and date of use to the room, there is a handheld module which plugs into the bottom of the lock. The module will download the lock information and tell you when the door was last accessed and, in the case of a member of staff lifting an item from the room, the master staff cards are specific to the member of staff to whom the card was issued.

Some cards will automatically wipe if they are tried in the incorrect lock, so the next wedding you are at make sure you get the correct room after the session in the residents bar or you will have the long drunkin walk back down to reception to have your card re-authorised :D
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