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Is chip-and-PIN the answer to safer credit card transactions?

Dec 26, 2013

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A chip and pin debit console is seen on 23 February, 2006, in Manchester, England.; Credit: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

As Target continues to investigate how the details of 40 million credit cards were stolen from their stores, attention has now turned to improved payment technology. The use of magnetic strips on the back of cards has been blamed in part for the security breach at Target. Security experts say it’s time to look again at the use of chip-and-PIN. 

Financial institutions in the U.K., Canada and Hong Kong transitioned to the new system a number of years ago. Cards are no longer swiped, but inserted into a terminal. Consumers then enter their secure 4 digit PIN or sign for their purchase.

While chip-and-PIN is unable to put an end to fraud, the cost of replicating cards embedded with chip-and-PIN technology is high for criminals.  A number of credit card companies plan to roll out chip-and-PIN in the United States in the next two years.

From October 2015, Visa says it will encourage the use of the embedded cards, but stores that fail to upgrade to the new payment terminals may be liable to costs if a customer with a chip-enabled card is the victim of a security breach.  

As a consumer, do you think banks should be moving faster to implement chip-and-PIN technology? Would this make you feel safer while making financial transactions?

Guest:

Mary Ann Miller, Fraud & Financial Crime Consult with Nice Actimize

 Is chip and PIN the answer to safer credit card transactions?  photo

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