The spread of particle-borne contamination by surface-to-surface contact and its implications for exposures within the indoor environment have been observed - largely qualitatively. The present study was conducted with the aim of quantifying the mass transfer efficiency (TE) of deposited aerosol particles when selected soft and hard surfaces come in contact. The surfaces used were 100% cotton, synthetic fleece, plastic laminate and brass. Contact transfer efficiencies ranging from 2 to 45% were observed; these are very significant numbers in terms of hazardous aerosol transport in the environment. Other observations include an increase in the mass transferred with increased surface roughness. An increase in the applied pressure between the two surfaces in contact leads to a step change in transfer efficiency, so that two pressure regimes can be identified, with a transition pressure between them that depends on surface type. Time of contact appears to have little to no effect on the mass transfer efficiency for the surfaces studied, while contaminant loading has some effect that is not systematic. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.