Yogurt test and smart card security
PHILADELPHIA - June 13, 2011 (WPVI) -- What's the best yogurt? And how safe are so-called smart cards, those convenient debit and credit cards made with embedded computer chips?
The dairy aisle is crammed with all kinds of yogurt that claim to contain "probiotics," bacteria that eases digestive problems.
To test these claims, Consumer Reports sent samples of strawberry yogurts to an outside lab, including products from leading brands Dannon, Yoplait, and Stonyfield.
"It turns out that all the yogurts we tested, whether they were labeled probiotic or not, had high levels of bacteria that were good for you," said Consumer Reports' Linda Greene.
As far as nutrition, the Greek yogurts had more protein. But with any yogurt, look at the label for total sugar content.
"Several products we looked at contained about 25 grams of sugar per serving. That's equal to about six teaspoons of sugar!" said Greene.
As far as taste - all the yogurts rated at least good. Two were excellent.
"They were thick, creamy, and had more real fruit flavors," said Consumer Reports' Erin Gudeux.
Both are Greek yogurts: Fage Total 2% and Chobani Low-Fat.
Meantime, computer chips in credit and debit cards are designed to make it quicker and more convenient for you to buy things. But a Consumer Reports investigation shows that smart card technology can also make it more convenient for thieves.
Consumer Reports' Andrea Rock says so-called contactless cards make your personal data vulnerable.
"Thieves can collect the information while it's being transmitted by using a card reader that costs less than 100 dollars," said Rock.
To demonstrate, she tucked a card reader in her purse and bumped into a man Consumer Reports has staged with a contactless card in his pocket.
"From that little bump in the parking lot, it's possible to download your account number, expiration date, and security data to a computer," said Rock. "From there it's simple to use blank cards to make counterfeits."
Consumer Reports was then able to use the bogus card to successfully charge a transaction.
To reduce the risk of this happening to you - one option is to use a protective sleeve for your card. But a warning here - even a sleeve doesn't block out the signal completely.
Meantime, the banking industry insists contactless card technology is secure and that there have been no reports of problems.
food, identity theft, consumer reports, consumer news, nydia han
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