Cell Phones and Hotel Magnetic Key Cards Don't Mix


The desk clerk at the hotel I was staying in told me that the reason my room key card kept failing was because I kept it in my pocket next to my cell phone. Sure enough, after the clerk reactivated the card and I kept it in a separate pocket, the problem didn’t reoccur. Is that explanation an urban myth? What’s the story?

 I’ve had the same experience, and when I checked with a manager with my cell phone company, she told me it does happen from time to time—especially with phones that have a metal, rather than a plastic, case.

Stanley Zarowin is a contributing editor to the JofA . His e-mail address is stanley.joatech@gmail.com .

Do you have technology questions for this column? Or, after reading an answer, do you have a better solution? Send them to me via e-mail at stanley.joatech@gmail.com or via regular mail at the Journal of Accountancy, 220 Leigh Farm Road, Durham, NC 27707-8110.

Because of the volume of mail, I regret I cannot individually answer submitted questions. However, if a reader’s question has broad interest, I will answer it in a forthcoming Technology Q&A column.


©2008 AICPA


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