Although bank credit cards aren’t morphing as fast as, say, mobile phones, they’ve come a long way since the merchant credit score cards businesses used to offer customers a century ago. And, thanks to security concerns and mobile technological innovation, those changes might accelerate.
Here are six ways that technological innovation is changing how bank credit score cards look — and how you might use them.
1. More advanced security features
Because of the threat of identity theft, security is a big concern with bank credit score cards — and bank credit score cards makers have decided to use the best of technological innovation to fight thieves. For example, in 2012, MasterCard in Singapore introduced a credit score cards with an LCD display and numeric keypad meant to help secure purchases made by credit score cards holders. This feature requires an authentication code for every purchase. With a uniquely generated authentication code, identity thieves will now need more than just the numbers on the money score cards to make unauthorized purchases.
A less sophisticated but more prevalent security feature is called the CCV or “credit credit score cards verification” value. You’ve no doubt been asked for the three- or four-digit number on the back of your credit score cards. This prevents scammers from using it when all they have is the number on the front.
2. Mobile payment apps
Using a mobile payment system instead of your actual bank credit score cards is a product of combined technologies that allow you to use your phone, instead of your credit score cards, to make purchases.
To start, you link a payment credit score cards to the app. After that, the apps (which include Google Wallet, Isis and Square Wallet) function in different ways. Some rely on near field communication (NFC) technological innovation, which allows your phone to communicate wirelessly with the payment terminal. Others require you to “check in” to a business to temporarily synch your phone with the store’s payment system. Others allow you to generate a QR code or a barcode on your phone’s screen, which the store’s employees can then scan.
3. Unembossed credit score cards
You may have noticed many of today’s bank credit score cards have a different look. Manufacturers have embraced the unembossed look to offer better security and service to their clients. This means no more raised numbers and letters on your credit score cards. Aside from increasing protection against identity thieves (you can’t make a manual impression of the card), this technological innovation also results in more efficient service. Instead of waiting for days to get your credit score cards, you can get it right after completing your application. MasterCard and Visa are two examples of manufacturers that now use the flat credit score cards system.
4. Chip-and-PIN smart cards
Although rare in the United States, chip-and-PIN payment credit score cards technological innovation is commonplace in Europe. Chip-and-PIN credit score cards use embedded chips as opposed to magnetic stripes. You don’t swipe your credit score cards to pay; instead, you insert it into a slot and need to enter a personal identification number. Your credit rating cards are also tougher for thieves to clone than magnetic stripe credit score cards are. Some “hybrid” credit score cards feature both magnetic stripe technological innovation and the modern embedded chips.
Terminals accepting chip-and-PIN credit score cards are still rare in the U.S. — but the bank credit score cards networks are pushing merchants to upgrade in the name of payment security. In 2012, Visa, MasterCard and American Express began offering merchants incentives to do so.
5. Faster ways to pay
PayPass and payWave are technologies used by MasterCard and Visa, respectively, that can be used when buying items that cost less than $100. The technological innovation can be embedded in credit score cards and even key chains. All that you need to do is tap or wave your credit score cards over the terminal and you’re done. You don’t need to enter a PIN or attach your signature. That’s why the technological innovation is often described as “tap and go.”
6. Credit credit score cards go social
Credit credit score cards providers are starting to embrace social media in interesting ways. For example, American Express offers credit score cards members special deals and savings if they sync their credit score cards with Twitter. AmEx has also launched a free app that allows credit score cards members to send and receive money via Facebook. Other credit score cards networks and issuers offer customer service via Facebook and Twitter and use social media to break news to their followers about deals and giveaways.
These are just some of the more popular technologies integrated into bank credit score cards. As creditors and app developers continue to think up more ideas for making bank credit score cards life easier, you are bound to see more in the coming years.