back to article Coventry fans blue over 'hackable' cashless payment system

Coventry City fans are worried about the security of a cashless payment card introduced at the football club's Ricoh Arena stadium this season. The system, intended to reduce the time fans spend queuing at matches paying for food and beverages, is one of the first of its kind. However the technology behind the SkyBluePass is …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    All your burgers

    belong to us.

  2. Aidan Samuel

    one meeeelion hotdogs

    What will these nefarious skimmers do with all these cloned cards? They can only use them at the bar in the stadium right? And it will all be on CCTV. Doesn't really sound like a serious issue.

  3. AC
    Thumb Up

    Very interesting.

    Can you put the guy in contact with me please, The Arsenal use electronic season ticket cards for stadium entry too and I'm now concerned whether I could be affected by this.

  4. Jamie

    nothing to worry about

    Who would honestly want to go watch a Coventry game, let alone be such a fan they purchase this.

    Let the flaming begin.

  5. Stuart Castle Silver badge

    Re: one meeeelion hotdogs

    It isn't a serious issue to you, but what about the poor schmuck who puts a load of money on his/her card ready for some serious drinking/eating at the match, only to find someone else has taken all the money off it?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hardly a problem...

    It's not as if anyone's going to want to go to that level of effort to see Coventry play for free!

  7. Tony


    If a couple of dozen organised criminals turn up for free hotdogs, at least it will double Coventry's home game attendance.

  8. edge_e

    This needs to be sent to Coventry

    I just can't see why any criminal is going to bother cloning a card that's only valid inside Coventry city's stadium. Because of the enclosed nature of a football ground you're going to get caught if you use after the owner reports strange transactions.

  9. Kevin Gurney
    Thumb Down

    It's not just Coventry

    The fact that it's "only" Coventry isn't the issue.

    What IS the issue is that companies are rolling out these cards knowing that they have security issues.

    Would it be more important if it was Manchester United or Chelsea rolling ou insecure payment cards ?

  10. Chris


    Ok, ticket touts are a pain, but while there isn't common cause for Cov tickets to sell out, I'm sure a 1/2 price skimmed season ticket would be a tasty offer to anyone who's thinking of shelling out the full whack. But then, anyone who is would be supporting the club, so would they bother at all?

    Interesting to see if they role the scheme to the other areas in the venue (e.g. the casino..)

    Anyway, it doesn't inspire confidence in your new product does it?

  11. Charlie

    Up the Arse

    I have an Arsenal season ticket and I can't carry it in the same wallet as my Oyster card because of the clash.

    However there is currently no option to load the season ticket with cash to buy stuff.

    I suppose the main risk from cloning is having too many people inside the stadium and also some sort of touting fiasco but I assume that the same card can't be used to get into the stadium twice on the same day so a ticket-only scam has limited possibilities.

    At the Amsterdam Arena where Ajax play they have a cashless food and drink concession system in which you buy a pre-paid card from a vending machine. You can use the card to buy stuff and it's all very quick because no cash changes hands. You can re-charge the card with more money if you are a regular and if you aren't then you end up with a nice little souvenir.

    Also if you don't spend all you credit before you go the club trouser the surplus.

  12. Stu Pid
    Thumb Up

    @It's not just Coventry

    No it wouldn't be more important, but it would be funnier!

  13. Ben Darlow

    Forget free hotdogs; how about a free season ticket?

    The main worry I had when I first started looking into it was not really so much to do with the possibility of nabbing free credit to use to buy drinks/snacks, but the fact the same cards are used for season ticket subscriptions. This being the case, you could theoretically clone another season ticket.

    Also, with regards to the cloning of cash; the organised crime benefit would be that you are able to withdraw 'unused' cash from cards. If you cloned cards then withdrew the money, you could basically use the club as your own personal ATM...

  14. Neil

    @Stuart Castle

    It doesn't work like that - a cloned card would be loaded with a specified amount of cash and could be used independently of the "real" card unless the system is keeping track of card usage (inc. current amount on the card) and blocks both cards when it detects an anomaly - but if tracking is in use it would make cloning more difficult in the first place, so it's unlikely any such tracking is in fact in place.

    Oh and Chelsea introduced RFID based ticket entry this season, but as far as I know Chelsea have no plans for cash payments.

    Cloning someone elses season ticket is somewhat pointless unless you want to run the risk of a ruck when the real ticket owner turns up and gives you a good hiding. Although it's possible the real owner may be barred from entering the ground if the system has already seen his card for that game, which means the problem will be brought swiftly to the attention of the authorities and one very easy collar for the old Bill - East Stand Upper, Row 15, Seat 28 etc. Conversely some mong with a cloned card travels all the way to the game only to discover they can't get in. Whichever way you look at it, cloning a stadium season ticket is a pointless excercise and not a big deal!

  15. Ben
    Thumb Up

    As a Coventry fan...

    ... I for one welcome our new non-secure card toting overlords. As long as they've planned it so that they draw Chelsea in the cup and siphon off Frank Lampard's entire pie budget so that we can finally invest some cash in the team.

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