Costa Rica Banks Discarded Magnetic Stripes on Cards in Favor Chip

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    Although the BAC San José is the first to use chips on their cards, several banks in the country will start using microchips this year and will put aside the magnetic stripe. MasterCard explained that in the case of Costa Rica, at least two entities are migrating to this technology.

    Gabriel Pascual, director of MasterCard to Costa Rica, Honduras and Guatemala, said the microchip can store information more secure than magnetic stripe and handle different functions on a single card. According to figures from MasterCard to-date the number of people that have moved to to the chip is 725 million and 748,000 ATM cards, in more than 130 countries.

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    Pascual explained that the fundamental difference of these cards with the magnetic stripe is security, since the cards have chips that cannot be duplicated. “During a purchase at any merchant, the chip card communicates with the POS terminal and can validate the identity of the cardholder and transaction record,” Pascual deepened.

    Moreover, MasterCard, Visa and Europay established a standard for smart card payments, called EMV. This standard defines the interaction between chip cards and processing devices on the physical, electrical, data, application, concluding transactions.

    Pascual cited that with these advances will casue magnetic stripe cards to disappear gradually. An example is the United States where the process has just begun, while Canada cards with chips are commonly used.

    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)
    San Jose Costa Rica

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