Identity thieves target travelers

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — What do you do with your boarding pass after you fly? Do you even think about it? It not, you could be putting yourself in danger.

Crooks can get information from that pass and use it to steal your identity.

So, what kind of personal information do you think is on your boarding pass? We asked Jim Loughlin of Milford as he was coming off a flight at Bradley International Airport.

“Let’s see, my name, my frequent flyer numbers and that’s about it,”  Loughlin said.

Experts say there’s much more than just a seat number and your name on your boarding pass because of the bar-code. Some airlines have precautions in place, but the bar-code on your boarding pass can be a pass to your personal information.

David Polgar is a college professor and an attorney. He says you need to treat your boarding pass like a credit card, because the credit card information you used to purchase your ticket can be embedded in the bar-code.

“We have to start thinking that there are a lot of ways for information to leak out,” Polgar said. “A bar-code on an airline ticket is one of those. So, if you have an airline ticket throw it away after you’re done with it.”

He says it’s not just boarding passes, but bar-codes can hold personal information on just about anything. A thief stole money reading the bar-codes of a winning ticket.

“A woman posted on social media that she won a lot of money at the racetrack,”  Polgar said. “But that racetrack ticket that she posted on Instagram made it possible for somebody to steal the information and steal the money.”

Another thing about the boarding pass. It tells thieves when you’re gone. If you leave your boarding pass and they find it, it lets them know that you’re not at home.

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