Monday, October 01, 2007

So much for a cashless society.

Out shopping as usual on a Monday evening and, again as usual, I ended up with a trolley load. Plus the granddaughter hanging on the side pointing at where she wants to go. Usually up the ramp to the next floor. Unusually there were massive queues which is a blow because that is why I go at this time to avoid queues.

However we quickly found that there was a problem with the link to the banks. It was intermittent and would not validate some of the cards. Some people did not have alternative cards and were forced to go outside to the ATMs and withdraw cash to keep going. As you can imagine it was not quick and there were several abandoned trolleys and baskets.

They took one of my credit cards to pay mine. Although I suspect that was not what they were looking for when the talk about cashless transactions.

On the way back to the car with a poor wet little girl who had not coped too well with the delay. I overheard someone coming from another shop close to this one who were also unable to validate the cards and was looking for cash. Makes you think how dependant we are on the infrastructure that has built up over the last few decades. Technology. Not very good to us at the moment with the use our government is making of it. Just think, all those tax records, DVLA data, KGB records on us all.

All with the potential, though, to be unavailable or corrupt and the government losing track of you in the blink of an eye. The ability to deprive them of this tool being more powerful than most weapons in the armoury.

A double edged sword currently being wielded against us but when the tide turns it will be used as evidence against those in power now.

Then technology will be back in our good books. We can get on with playing games again.


At 2:06 pm, Blogger Lord Higham-Johnson said...

Get out of credit, Bag and buy commodities. Do not buy anything virtual. The crash cometh.

At 9:19 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't know if you rememeber a few years back when BT's underground cables burnt out in Manchester?

Out here in the Peak District the ATM's and local phone lines were down for a week, none of the card terminals in any of the shops worked. Bizarrely enough though, I was still able to connect to broadband.

So, if you want to bring the country to a grinding halt, well! Not that I'm going to go into specifics just in case I get a knock on the door from the security services nor do I wan to give some blokes with beards any ideas either.

At 11:56 am, Blogger Bag said...

Henry, After some of our more recent run ins with the government it should be easy for any would be nutter with half a brain to see where to hurt us but the still insist on attacking people. Who are mass produced by unskilled labour. Maybe that is why they are called nutters.

I do remember that in Manchester our firm bought mobiles to get around it but, of course, we couldn't deal with locals as if they did the same we didnt know their numbers. For us it was an inconvienience but for many I suspect it was worse. I don't see it being of strategic value as a target. Although of course that doesn't stop you going on plods list now. :)

At 8:37 pm, Blogger Colin Campbell said...

You could really paralyse a society by shutting down bank clearing infrastructure for a few days.

At 10:18 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not really Colin. Although it is all done electronically but payments still take 3 days to clear, the fall back is still via courier and physically swapping of clearances round the table at the BoE.

This is how is used to be done before computers. And still only took 3 days for deposits to clear.


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