3M has introduced a new protective sleeve for contatcless smart cards and electronic passports. The 3M Toughshield sleeves are intended to form a barrier to protect against data-skimming of such devices.
The new sleeves resemble the paper shields used as protection for cards during shipping, but are lined with a thin, copper-coated conductive polymer. The metallic layer, developed from shielding technology from 3M used in a variety of electronic devices, blocks radio frequencies used in skimming attempts.
Among the other 3M technologies used in constructing the shields is the 3M TufQUIN Inorganic Hybrid Insulating Paper used as the sleeves’ outer layer, which is bonded to the inner shield with 3M acrylic adhesive. Though the final product is thin and flexible, the outer material is tear and water resistant; after 2000 cycles of abrasion resistance testing in 3M’s laboratories, it retains 99% of its shielding effectiveness.
The Toughshield can be customized to fit a wide array of devices and has a printable surface, so the sleeve could be used as a marketing tool.