Say goodbye to the 1960s’ technology in your pocket. We at First County Bank, as well as most banks nationally, will be issuing new debit cards to our customers early this fall adding the new EMV chip to your debit card. The EMV chip is actually a computer chip embedded in your card to authenticate transactions, improve payment security and reduce the likelihood of fraudsters stealing account information. These enhancements come in the wake of very well-publicized frauds at Home Depot, Target and other retailers.
Retailers will be adding new in-store technology and payment processes to accommodate this change. Industry experts anticipate 700 million new cards will be issued. Card users will be affected as the well-known “swipe” will be replaced with “the dip” meaning cards will need to remain in the reader until the transaction is complete and either a signature or PIN added. If a merchant has not yet converted to the new point-of-sale EMV technology, the reader will default to the less secure magnetic stripe information on the reverse side of the card.
The U.S. is the last major market still using the magnetic-stripe card system. Many European countries moved to EMV technology years ago to combat high fraud rates. The upcoming shift to the EMV card should help many of our customers when they travel.
We are very aware of how inconvenient it is for our customers when we are notified of actual or potential fraud on your debit card and have to reissue your card. This enhanced chip technology will better protect your information, should be easy to use and be more accepted globally now that this technology will soon become standard in the U.S.
We’ll provide you with more information as we begin to the reissue process but rest assured using your debit card remains a secure and efficient way to make purchases.