Dirty money spreading COVID-19

From: Razz (RAZZMAN)28 Mar 2020 11:46
To: Carl (SPARTACUS) 1 of 2
I've been saying for weeks that dirty money may be contributing to the rapid spread of COVID-19. Handling money has always been viewed as a way to spread disease. Now with such an explosion of new cases in New York, it is imperative that people heed to call of eliminating cash in their purchases. Even though the plastic of credit cards can also transmit viruses, they can be cleaned a lot easier.

New York State is eliminating cash tolls at their toll booths to protect their toll collectors. Only Easy Pass and photographing of license plates will be used to collect tolls. Other agencies and even stores may follow.

I have been old fashioned in converting to just credit card purchases in stores. Having my Discover Card being hacked several times the past few years because of using the card at gas stations and stores, I have mainly used just cash to pay for my purchases. Now, I have to re-think my policy for payments, even though I run the risk of someone getting my credit card info and using it for their own purchases.

Here's an article from the WHO that advises against using dirty money...


COVID-19 May Spread Through Contaminated Cash, Says WHO

by Cloey Mangali on Thursday, March 5, 2020

With the spread of the novel coronavirus strain COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) is advising everybody to avoid using banknotes as they could be used to transmit the virus from one person to another.

After an analysis of 22 different studies on coronavirus strains such as the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), and the current COVID-19 published on the Journal of Hospital Infection, it is believed that these viruses remain infectious on contaminated objects such as credit cards, doorknobs, handrails, and the like at room temperature for as long as nine days.

That said, the WHO warns that paper cash could carry the highly-infectious bacteria for several days just as much as other common surfaces, thus reminding everyone to use contactless payments if possible, to halt the spread of the disease.

According to global health authorities, although it is not yet clear if whether the new coronavirus strain behaves that way, and the risk is lower than human-to-human contact, it would still be best to avoid using cash to reduce the risk of transmission.
(Read: Know More About The 2019 Novel Coronavirus: Symptoms, Prevention, And Hospitalization Costs)

Say no to “dirty” money

Knowing that the coronavirus can spread through droplets and contaminated objects which come in direct contact with the infected patients, various countries are stepping up their efforts to stop the spread of the killer virus.

China and Korea, for example, began disinfecting and isolating used cash by using ultraviolet light or high-temperature sterilization prior to sealing it and storing it for up to 14 days before recirculating it.

The WHO also reminds people to wash their hands more often especially after handling paper money and being in public places and minimize physical contact with others.

According to them, people should focus mostly on their hygiene and maintaining a safe distance of at least one meter from other people especially those who are showing the signs and symptoms of the disease.

Medical experts are also reminding everybody that good hygiene is key and that cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces you mostly touch is just as important.

Although there is little to no risk contamination from letters and parcels from abroad because the virus cannot survive for days on inanimate objects, it is still better if people could avoid it.
EDITED: 28 Mar 2020 11:59 by RAZZMAN
From: Razz (RAZZMAN)28 Mar 2020 11:56
To: ALL2 of 2
The transmission of the Coronavirus has seen rapid spread the past two months and the main culprit may be dirty money. Paper money is everywhere and circulating throughout the world, and so is COVID-19. Even the use of credit cards is not entirely safe as the plastic cards can also carry the virus. The solution is to disinfect your cards after you use them and even bring you own pen to sign for purchases.

As for the dirty money, make sure you wear protective gloves when handling it and then washing your hands thoroughly after taking off your gloves.


Dirty money: The case against using cash during the coronavirus outbreak

By Samantha Murphy Kelly | CNN Business

The ongoing spread of coronavirus is forcing institutions around the world to rethink one particularly germy surface that most consumers touch every day: cash.

On Friday, South Korea’s central bank said it was taking all banknotes out of circulation for two weeks — and burning some — to reduce the spread of the virus, according to Reuters. It follows China’s massive initiative around deep cleaning potentially infected cash with ultraviolet light and high temperatures, and in some cases, destroying it. The treated cash comes from high-risk infection areas, such as hospitals.

Meanwhile, the Louvre museum in Paris this week banned cash amid the outbreak. Its decision to accept only credit card payments was part of an effort to make staffers feel more comfortable about returning to work, according to the Associated Press.

The concerns over cash come as the global number of people infected by the coronavirus nears 100,000, mostly in China. The outbreak may just drive up adoption of mobile payments, a newer technology that has long trailed behind cash in the US, according to Aaron Press of research firm IDC.

Mobile and contactless payments options range from Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Pay, where consumers use smartphones or smartwatches to pay in stores, to credit cards with a NFC chip, allowing shoppers to hold them near a reader to pay.

“It makes sense why they’d want to use a phone or card in a contactless environment, especially where no signature is required as part of the process and you don’t have to touch the terminal,” Press said.

Some businesses have already made changes to reduce contact with questionable surfaces. Starbucks temporarily suspended the use of personal cups and tumblers at its North American stores and Instacart rolled out doorstep delivery that doesn’t require human contact.

But the Louvre’s effort to curb the exchange of physical currency could clash with the Bank of France’s stance on requiring businesses to accept cash. At the same time, many cities in the US — including New York City, San Francisco and the state of New Jersey — have also passed legislation to require cash acceptance, as millions of Americans don’t have bank accounts or credit cards. (Cash remains the most frequently used form of payment in the US, representing about 30% of all transactions, according to the Federal Reserve.)

“There is no doubt we pass microorganisms through cash,” Paul Matewele, a senior lecturer in microbiology at London Metropolitan University, told CNN Business. “[Studies show] a number of things we would never have thought would be present.”

According to a 2017 study conducted in New York City, researchers found microorganisms living on the surface of cash, ranging from mouth and vaginal bacteria to flu-like viruses. The World Health Organization recommends washing your hands after handling money, especially before eating food.

And credit cards aren’t necessarily any more sanitary: Microorganisms are able to transfer to credit cards in similar ways and point-of-sale terminals are used by multiple people.

Businesses can cut down on contact by not requiring a signature at checkout, according to Press. In low-value purchases — think a coffee and a sandwich — a signature adds no true fraud protection. “In many cases, you are signing for things you don’t actually need to sign for,” he added.

China is already well into becoming a cashless society despite the outbreak. According to eMarketer, nearly 50% of China’s population used mobile payments to make purchases in the second quarter of 2019. QR code payment platforms, including WeChat and AliPay, have also proven successful and mobile and contactless payment solution providers are expanding into other markets, including mass transit, said Phil Sealy, a digital security research director at ABI Research.

One official at the People’s Bank of China reportedly said last month that China would double down on mobile payments to avoid unnecessary human contact.

Although some shoppers could find more comfort in adopting contactless and mobile solutions, Matewele of London Metropolitan University said shoppers must be diligent about keeping phones clean, too.

“It is difficult to know the bacterial load on our hands as we handle our [cash and cards]. I suppose as people move to electronic transactions, the risk is reduced. But we still use our phones [for mobile payments] after touching some surfaces,” said Matewele.

In addition to washing your hands after touching money, other forms of protection include using antibacterial or baby wipes to clean phones and credit cards, and carrying your own pen to sign receipts.