Picture of RFID Secure Wallet
RFID has been used in stores and cars as a identification system for years. They seem to make life in general more efficient.

With RFID tags in Credit Cards, Passports, and drivers licenses coming out I started to worry. Soon there will be RFID tags in money. I guess that would help solve some of the poverty problems. RFID tags are also not very secure. When the first RFID passports came out in the UK the encryption on the chips was broken in under 48 hours!

RFID blocking wallets are for sale for ~$20 (http://www.difrwear.com/products.shtml). However these are a little unstylish(yes I know its not a word) and pricey for me.

So here I will show you how to make a RFID shielded wallet that doubles as a waterproof, tear proof, cool looking ducktape wallet, without spending a fortune.

We will use Aluminum foil as a to block the radio waves that power the RFID, like a faraday cage.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
You will need:
-Aluminum Foil
-Double sided Scotch(or similar brand) tape
-Packaging tape(optional)
Laral2 months ago

Much better than DUCT tape and aluminum foil:

HVAC Foil Tape


I read that aluminum foil isn't good at bloxcking rfid chips. rfid chips can allegedly be read "through cars"! It makes me wonder how effective the commercial products are...
louis.m8 months ago

Using a cellphone to test RFID shielding is a very simple and useful tip, maybe I'll also make a little RFID jacket for my cellphone !

ro li1 year ago

hopefully i am not displaying my ignorance of physics and manufacturing but is there any polarization effect if you rotate the pieces of foil - will this increase the efficacy or is this just a waste of foil?

An OK idea for the seriously broke or cheap. However the downside of using any tape, inc. duct tape (not 'duck', mercy on our billed cousins!) for a permanent 'fix' is that after a while the glue comes off and leaves very hard to remove deposits on whatever it touches (inside your back pocket in this case). I know this from sad experience. Better off buying a purpose-made shielding wallet, card pouches, or in-wallet RFID jammer such as ArmourCard.
I recently did some research on this as my wife got skimmed, I found this cool product made in Australia called Armourcard, it jams RFID signals and fits in a wallet. Pretty cool we both have one now. http://www.armourcard.com.au/
bdl8 years ago
Could you also use the shiny metallic covers that come with some CDs? Are these RFID proof or just anti-magnetic proof-type thingy ??????
dogsrcool2me (author)  bdl8 years ago
could you explain these covers in more detail?
RFID = magnetism. light is magnetism, radio waves, microwaves, X-rays.... pretty much any "wave" is magnetism. so yes, tinfoil will stop any of those.
lets just say i have this super powerful light will it pull itself to my refrigerator?
probably not, its a frequency, not a steady stream like a fridge magnet is. anyhow, if you where to get that powerful of a light, you would burn stuff up with it.
No offense, but do you have any idea what your talking about?
somewhat. I'm not a pro. I'm speaking from my experience, and from what I've read about physics.
Which is all that guys with PhD's have done - read a lot, lots of experience (experiments) and then convinced other people with PhD's that they know it.

Question: Who had the first degree? Who gave it to him? What were THEIR qualifications? Did that mean that their graduate was more qualified than them? hmm, interesting....
The electric wave from the electromagnetic field would induce a current in a conductive material. This current would cause the conductive material to become magnetic by aligning the magnetic domains. However, fridge material is probably not conductive at the frequency of light. again "MAGNETISM IS NOT ELECTROMAGNETISM" Electromagnetism is were a changing magnetic wave that produces a electric field that then produces an magnetic field. A permanent magnet only produces an unchanging magnetic field.
true, but you can move a permanent magnet to produce a changing field. ever see those flashlights you shake to charge?
thats because the magnet disturbs the atomic particles in the wire causing electrons(or protons cant remember which) to flow in the wire generating electricity which then powers the light. Just read up on generators and how they work
Electrons. Protons have a positive charge.
And that's "subatomic" particles.
which are made up of quarks and gluons. :)
not atoll im just a kid who likes explosives with a passion for science
your the same as me
lol thanks for clearing that up
Light is a particle, not a wave. how else would they make laser pointers or cut things with lasers?
Qoute"electromagnetism DOES NOT = MAGNITISM"end qoute.
dogsrcool2me (author)  glitcher7 years ago
light is both a particle and a wave It has aspects of both
god i cant wait until what is it physics? im just dying to understand all of it!!!! (really!)
dogsrcool2me (author)  conrad24687 years ago
see post above
No, RFID = electromagnetic waves light is electromagnetism, radio waves, microwaves, X-rays.... pretty much any "wave" is electromagnetism. so yes, tinfoil may spot alot of these, It depends on the electron configuration.

electromagnetism DOES NOT = MAGNITISM
Absolutely right!

Prove it to yourself - get a magnet and wrap it in aluminum foil. Try to pick up something with the magnet. Did it still work?

Aluminum foil will block RF, but not magnetism.
RFID = magnetism. light is magnetism, radio waves, microwaves, X-rays.... pretty much any "wave" is magnetism. so yes, tinfoil will stop any of those.
so i wrap up my mobile phone in tin foil it would block out all radio waves to and from it?
ummm could i just put a piece of tin foil instead of making one of these?
yes! thanks
iBurn7 years ago
couldn't you just line your wallet with a brass mesh? Or would that be too expensive?
It's called AlFoil. Cheap, suitable, able to shape into a helmet XD. Not sure about brass but aluminum foil is well known on instructables for blocking/boosting signals. Also, you can get Aluminium foil/tape which may be more convenient. Nice instructable *Votes*
Quotes self: *Votes* Not in a competition >_< soz to get ur hopes up.
...also very easy to form into a tinfoil hat!
Snappy834 years ago
Thanks for the info about RFID! Its awsome people like you that share good info that most people need to know about :) cheers!
andi4566 years ago
They already have RFIDs in money. Its those magnetic strips in them.
dombeef andi4565 years ago
That is not rfid
fox646 years ago
"Probably works" ... nice. Going to Defcon this year, gonna have to make these. Nice job BTW! I would have loved to see you put more work into the design of the wallet, like the all of the other duct tape wallets out there.

newby, your too late. plus the guy on I-hacked left some tin foil showing which is a plus over this
dogsrcool2me (author)  TheCheese99218 years ago
I did not get the idea from this site, I got the idea of using tin foil from wikipedia and did the rest myself. I don't understand why you are calling me a newby. I am not to late. The one on i-hacked looked bad because it had tinfoil showing and they did not even come up with a way of testing it.
OK this will prove your are a blind noob

Tin foil show is what makes it better because otherwise it would just look like a duck tape wallet. Also shiny stuff is awesome.

Secondly you must be totally blind because the one on I-Hacked DID test it, read the second paragraph

"It seemed to be pretty well known online that aluminum foil prevented the transmission of RFID signals. 'A quick test at my work place using my badge confirmed this.' The next step was to design a wallet with aluminum foil embedded inside. Using the plans to make Duct Tape Wallets I created previously, it was simple to modify them to include the aluminum foil."
'DUCT' tape, not 'duck' tape. called so because its use in HVAC 'duct' work.
actually, IIRC, it was originally used by the US army to repair amphibious vehicles, hence, duck tape
ACTUALLY, The US Army adapted duct tape from HVAC or some other duct worker during WWII because they needed tough water resistent tape. First it was duct, then it adapted duck. Don't you love it when we are all right? :)
No, no, no. You're all only half-right. The US Army needed a waterproof tape for sealing munition boxes. Johnson and Johnson added a waterproof layer to some of their medical tape and the army was good to go. It was called "duck tape" because it was waterproof. When the war ended, the people doing HVAC work started to use it to repair gaps and fix seams. They coloured it grey to blend in with the HVACs. At this point it was re-named "duct tape" because it was used on ducts. So either work, but "duct" is a bit nicer than "duck" because people know that you're talking about the type of tape in general, and not duck brand duc-k/t tape.
NOOOOOO, HVAC adapted it first, here, ill look it up =P
hmmmmmmmm your right actually... here you go anyways Duct tape (sometimes called duck tape; see under Etymology) is a vinyl, fabric-reinforced, multi-purpose pressure sensitive tape with a soft and tacky pressure sensitive adhesive. It is generally silver or black in color but many other colors and transparent tapes have recently become available. With a standard width of 17⁄8 inches (48 mm), duct tape was originally developed during World War II in 1942 as a waterresistant sealing tape for ammunition cases.[1][2] Permacel, then a division of Johnson & Johnson, used a rubber-based adhesive to help the tape resist water and a fabric backing to add strength. It was also used to repair military equipment quickly, including jeeps, guns, and aircraft because of these properties. In Canadian military circles, this variant is known as "gun-tape", typically olive-green, and also known for its resistance to oils and greases. Duct tape is also called "100-MPH tape" in the military [3], because soldiers often refer to something that exceeds expectations as "High Speed." After WWII, the housing industry boomed and people started using duct tape for many other purposes. The name "duct tape" came from its use on heating and air conditioning ducts, a purpose for which it, ironically, has been deemed ineffective. Its strength, low cost, and remarkable versatility make it a household staple throughout North America and Europe for temporary repairs and general-purpose use. THERE, solid proof...
childB glitcher6 years ago
niiiiice. fail

BTW, It can be called both, but mor popularly 'DUCT'
aaa666 glitcher7 years ago
i think duck is a brand like romex
el eliel aaa6666 years ago
here is your proof! http://duckproducts.com/about/
xxzalexx aaa6667 years ago
Cotton duck is a heavy, tightly woven, cotton fabric (generically referred to as canvas) . This is the fabric that is in DUCK tape... and is, in fact why it's called duck tape. The name comes from from the Dutch word doek meaning a linen canvas which was used for sailors' clothing. This usage predates both WWII and central heating. Just as with the fabric the tape a tighter weave and higher thread count equals a heavier, stronger, higher quality product. Call it by either name and people will know what you're talking about... and argue :)
glitcher j626no7 years ago
duct work with duck/duct work stopped becuse of its ironica ineffectiveness.
duck/duct TAPE lol
dogsrcool2me (author)  TheCheese99218 years ago
If the tin foil shows then it is exposed and can be damaged. He tested if tin foil works NOT his wallet.
lg47476 years ago
very fashionable
lg47476 years ago
It is a rather baddish and fashionable product,I love it.
PKTraceur6 years ago
Cute Dog! I guess I will have to update my DT wallet to be RFID blocking. Well, here goes another layer of DT! ~RoAr
rfid6 years ago
Thanks for the Instructable. interesting
PocketSized8 years ago
I'm going to have to try and make one of these, along with a mobile phone sock containing Tin Foil (I'm sure my blasted phone is still sending out signals even when it's turned off). :D Thanks for the Instructable.
how would you recieve a call or a text
Who keeps their phone in their wallet?
Wolf Seril7 years ago
I dont get it- why do you want to block RFID signals? Could you be tracked with them or something?
cyberian7 years ago
Do you have any plans for a tin foil hat so they can't read my mind? Very annoying, that mind reading.
why not make the same thing without tinfoil and make the outer opening layers a pouch and put a bunch of lead shot in there... it may be heavier but it'll protect you from those darn X-rays at the airport.
where you get camo DT? ME WANT KNOW NOW!!
sk8erdude7 years ago
where did you get that cool duct tape Great instructable -sk8erdude
wal-mart, near the paint.......all kinds of colors.......or the huntin/ sporting goods isle...i wanted blaze orange figured they'd have it with the other orange hunting appearal, nope,camafloge not orange go figure, but they did have it in the duct tape isle....even had purple....not sure what u'd use purple duct tape for but i got some anyway.....LOL btw they do make a tinfoil type tape also......not sure if that would work or not......
I believe the tinfoil type you're talking about is flashing tape. You run it around windows and such after they're installed in a house. It's not very flexible though.
hack124x7688 years ago
Huh, I guess I'm not the only one who has thought of this. I never figured to use a phone to test if it locks radio waves though. Are you sure RFID and GSM operate on similar enough frequencies for that test to be reliable?
Depends on the tag, some tags operate closer to GSM frequencies others don't. For example the "EM-4001" compliant tags run at 125kHz GSM runs in the GHz band. (near microwaves) as does bluetooth, wifi etc
dogsrcool2me (author)  hack124x7688 years ago
GSM: 800 -900 RFID: 3000-300 The idea is to make sure the faraday cage works.
savagesteve7 years ago
Microwave your money for 15 seconds, it will burn up the RFID chip inside. 8-)
dogsrcool2me (author)  savagesteve7 years ago
and if you actually want to occasionally use the rfid chip in your passport, creditcard etc...
JakeTobak8 years ago
What good is a waterproof wallet when the cash inside isn't waterproof?
You can dry cash, but you can't dry wallets. It's the 15th law of thermodynamics...
You violated the 1st law of thermodynamics, "Don't talk about thermodynamics"! Oh crap, I just violated the 1st law of... nevermind
::offers a fist to "pound"::

Awesome =)
dogsrcool2me (author)  JakeTobak8 years ago
Cash has cotton in it which keeps it from falling apart.
Fenwick8 years ago
I like this. There's no big RFID theft now, but there could be soon in the future. Good foresight, and good craftmanship. Also, good use of duct tape :D.
Mekkie Boy8 years ago
I think it's an awesome idea, easy, and cool looking. Thanks dog!.
royalestel8 years ago
This is a good think. When RFID credit cards came out I thought, "someone's just going to walk through a crowd with a portable RFID scanner hidden in something and steal data like crazy." I'm just not going to have an RFID card, but this is still great for those that must have it.
dogsrcool2me (author)  royalestel8 years ago
I had the same idea.
joshuajahr8 years ago
hey comeon, why do you people hate this idea? i like it, and it's cool in my opinion so honestly, stop being buttheads about it. Also cheese boy, aluminum foil should be covered for aesthetical reasons and such.
ineluctable8 years ago
complete with aluminum foil helmet! i love it.
dogsrcool2me (author) 8 years ago
Why the negative reviews?
There's a chance that since rating will be part of winning this contest, some others in the contest are giving out negative ratings. We'll do a check and make sure this isn't the case as we know record who gives each rating.
dogsrcool2me (author)  lebowski8 years ago
Thank you
rimar20008 years ago
I am not completely sure, but I believe that the mass of the Faraday insulation is important: if the RF waves are weaks, they won't pass over, but if they are strong they will do it
PocketSized8 years ago
lol. well atleast the wallet won't get wet.