The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

The Canadian Police are helpless in the face of the chip card offerring from Canadian Banks.

The best they can do is come up with a statement like this.

Police warn of Toronto debit card skimming scam

Urging retailers to pay close attention to their point-of-sale (POS) devices, Toronto and Peel Regional Police announced newly discovered technology used in the scams Thursday.

Pay close attention?  How many merchants lock their devices away at night I wonder?

Just to be clear, here is the issue that I have been ranting about ever since the early days of chip card planning at the bank where I worked.

There is no issue with chip cards per se.  Consumers can feel safe with those.  The problem is the compromise that the banks agreed to by retaining the mag stripe.  The crooks are able to copy the mag stripe, create a new card and use it in the US or Canadian merchants who are still using old technology.

The retention of the mag stripe was a bad idea in 2003 when we first spoke about this.  But today it makes no sense.  I recently had a card cancelled and replaced.  The reason is that I used it at a compromised merchant.  So many customers were affected they had not even had time to call me.  It was highly inconvenient, yet the apologists for the retention of the mag stripe promoted it in favour customer satisfaction.  The opposite is happening.

I have always believed that customers armed with chip card only cards would seek out merchants with the proper terminals and merchant conversion would be faster.

I will continue to rant about this until I get a card with chip only.

Written by Colin Henderson

May 31, 2012 at 22:40

Posted in Uncategorized

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