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Author Topic: Trial of new revenue protection technology  (Read 327 times)
johnneyw
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« on: December 03, 2022, 05:07:58 pm »

There's a brief report here of a new technology trial aimed a detecting fare dodgers.  Perhaps understandably, it doesn't reveal too much about how it works.

https://metro.co.uk/2022/12/01/new-device-is-set-to-catch-train-fare-dodgers-17864785/?ito=facebook|social|metroukfacebook
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Fourbee
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« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2022, 11:36:10 am »

Ticket gates can already be set for railcard blocks etc. not sure what is added beyond that. I think the DfT» (Department for Transport - about) are doing the rounds with various TOCs (Train Operating Company) for these ticketless travel surveys.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2022, 12:40:58 pm »

From the report, it is ibvious that many have found a route around the barriers, hence the number of ticketless travellers picked up. The report is designed NOT to privide any further info of course, so people keep wondering
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stuving
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« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2022, 06:17:53 pm »

It seems to be doing what most people think barriers do already - reading the data off the mag stripe and flagging invalid tickets. It can hardly read more data that way; there's only so much there. It might be trying to read what's printed, which should be feasible these days, but I don't think it does.

Mainly, it's showing a clearer and more useful explanation of the refusal for staff to use. Current barriers don't do very well at this, and staff don't always know enough to make sense of the error codes (if they even see them). Where limitations of current barriers, data not coded at all, and other factors lead to simplified refusal rules that catch valid tickets, then this might provide a back-up to let them through. However, that may not be management's priority in using the new readers.
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Ralph Ayres
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« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2022, 11:03:49 pm »

The article couldn't really have explained it much less clearly! Someone obviously wanted to put out a press release about a new bit of kit which is probably used once a gate rejects a ticket, but was so worried about giving away any details that it ended up meaningless, and they have inevitably glossed over why there wasn't already anything similar if it's so useful.  I agree that it's likely to give more details than the basic numeric reject code shown by the gate, though some of that can of course be done just by reading what is printed on a physical ticket and applying the rules (but see anecdotal complaints about off-peak tickets and gateline staff at Paddington).  Staff anywhere that accepts tickets on smartcards are already meant to have devices that can read them in great detail, otherwise you're left looking at a piece of plastic.

I used what I suspect was this device's predecessor back in the 90s.  It was handy for instance if someone was trying to reuse a ticket which a later gate then correctly rejected. The passenger would deny everything and claim there must be a problem with the gate and with no detail to go on staff had to give them the benefit of the doubt.  Read off exactly when and where they'd previously been and suddenly they would remember the journey that must have slipped their mind. Equally you could sometimes confirm that a mistake had been made such as accidentally using the wrong half of a return ticket and be lenient.
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Surrey 455
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« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2022, 12:07:39 am »

Staff anywhere that accepts tickets on smartcards are already meant to have devices that can read them in great detail, otherwise you're left looking at a piece of plastic.
Which is how I get through the barriers at Epsom. SWR» (South Western Railway - about) smartcards should be able to be read at this Southern station but are rejected. The barrier staff know this so I show them my smartcard to get through. They have never read it electronically though. Oddly, the barriers at nearby Leatherhead, another Southern station will read my smartcard.

In early 2019 SWR confirmed to me that taking a break of journey using my season ticket at Epsom was valid and that "interoperability" would take place later that year meaning that I should then have no further problems.

Almost four years later, nothings happened and my smartcard still gets rejected.  Sad
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