Case in point—the Electronic Recovery and Access to Data (ERAD) Prepaid Card Reader. This tool, developed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), is increasingly being deployed by local police departments.
The ERAD allows cops to swipe prepaid cards, check the balance, freeze the account and take all the money. The ostensible purpose is to go after “bad guys” with “dirty money,” as drug traffickers are turning to prepaid cards instead of bundles of cash when traveling.
However, this ERAD-enabled moral crusade by government will undoubtedly bring about more theft from innocent people, including those with no actual drugs and harmless users who might have a joint lying around.
Approximately $1 million has already been seized by state and local police agencies using ERAD card readers.
Bill Soto, program manager at the DHS Science and Technology Directorate, describes how the new CAF tool is becoming a hot item.
The Prepaid Card Reader has generated a lot of interest from our state and local law enforcement agency partners, and there is a growing demand by these agencies for use of this technology by their personnel. It provides a unique tool for when they encounter suspect cards with magnetic strips during the performance of their duties.