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TTC launches card with hologram

Jun 04, 2009 04:30 AM
Tess Kalinowski
transportation reporter

In an effort to fight fraud, the TTC is adding new credit-card style security features to the 260,000 Metropasses it sells each month.

Starting in July, all TTC passes will feature a hologram to help TTC drivers and collectors visually distinguish genuine passes from fakes.

Passes sold by the TTC’s 1,500 fare vendors also will come with a yellow sticker that must be removed before use. The stickers, which cannot be reapplied, are designed to stem the practice of “fare renting,” whereby some agents try to return used passes to the TTC for reimbursement.

The new security features will cost the system about $250,000 annually, but are expected to help prevent about $2 million in fraud-related losses each year.

Counterfeit passes displayed at a news conference yesterday were visually indistinguishable from the real thing, and transit officials say busy collectors and drivers can’t be expected to weed out the fakes.

Police have already seized about 2,500 fake passes and arrested 500 people in connection with counterfeiting this year.