How does the smartcard works on the buses?

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TSR :D

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Does the bus have a live link to satellite so it checks the tickets in realtime?

Or it just stores the info and it will be extracted at depot so it can be processed?

If latter, how does the bus will know if that card has zero balance or is invalidated?
 
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cainebj

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Data is stored on the card itself, just like a telephone card (maybe even electicity card, not came across one myself) storing details of how much credit is left on it, deducting the fare for each journey you make, like a telephone card deducted credit relating to how long the call made was.
 

trentside

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But wouldn't that easily be misused by putting fake money into cards?
How would you do that? A charge has to be made to the bank account or credit card associated with the account so the money can be put onto the card.
 

TSR :D

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You probably could do that with the vending machines that give top-ups, but you'd have to find a way of putting fake money into them.
Hacking those machines to give fake money could be one way. If money is just a piece of code, then that code could be easily made up on the fly unless it is heavily encrypted, but then it could be also cracked as well.

If the card works by money, then how does cards without money work? For example, travelcard and concessionary pass.
 

142094

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Concessionary travellers will probably get a different pass where the chip has been formatted to automatically open the gates.

With Oyster, I think you can top them up at newsagents? That is probably the weakest link as you could pay with funny money and get top ups that way.
 

LexyBoy

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Hacking those machines to give fake money could be one way. If money is just a piece of code, then that code could be easily made up on the fly unless it is heavily encrypted, but then it could be also cracked as well.

If the card works by money, then how does cards without money work? For example, travelcard and concessionary pass.
The ITSO specification can be downloaded from itso.org.uk if you have the inclination to wade through it.

'Electronic wallet' and tickets are held on the card in encrypted form such that only authorised parties can read it. I'd imagine that records of funds to and from cards are monitored and anything suspicious flagged.

Oyster has certainly been cracked (and patched) at least once, not sure about ITSO. At the end of the day it's still going to be possibe to forge value on smartcards, just as one can money and paper tickets. It's not easy though.
 
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