Card Security FAQ

Q. What is chip technology?

A. Chip-enabled cards are payment cards that are embedded with a microchip, designed to increase security and reduce card-present fraud. Some cards may require a PIN instead of a signature to complete the transaction process.

Q. What is an EMV chip?

A. EMV® is a global standard for credit and debit payment cards based on chip card technology. Named after its original developers –  Europay, MasterCard® and Visa®, this technology features payment cards with embedded microprocessor chips that store and protect cardholder data. This standard may also be referred to as: “chip and PIN” or “chip and signature.”

Q. Why are EMV cards more secure than traditional magnetic stripe cards?

A. Unlike magnetic stripes, that contain unchanging data which can be easily replicated, EMV chip creates a unique transaction code each time the card is used. Dynamic data is created in an instant making typical card duplication impossible.

Q. How do I know that I have a chip card?

A. You will see a microchip embedded on the front of your card.

Q. What is PIN?

A. PIN stands for Personal Identification Number.  You will be required to enter this number each time you make an in-store purchase or an ATM cash withdrawal. 

Q. How do I use my EMV card to make a purchase?

Instead of swiping a card, you will insert your card into a terminal slot and wait for it to process. You will then enter your PIN to authorize transaction.

Q. Do I always have to enter my PIN when using an EMV card?

A. Not necessarily. EMV card can also support contactless card reading, when the card is tapped against the terminal scanner that reads the data from the embedded chip.

A. What if the merchant I use doesn’t have a terminal that accepts PIN?

Q. You will be required to use a signature instead, as you would with traditional magnetic stripe cards. 

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