HCI blog

Thursday, October 07, 2004

ATM Cards: Chip and PIN Technology

Banking machines like ATM’s is one of our day to day interactions with supposed to be highly robust systems. ATM’s or Automated Teller Machines provide a whole range of banking facilities and have proven to meet our 24 hour banking needs. One can withdraw money from any part of the world and decreased the risks associated with carrying large amounts of cash money. Although a debit or a credit card, with a unique magnetic strip, has demonstrated the easiness of the cash management for people around the world yet there have been a lot of frauds and money scams ever since.
Recently, private companies, banks and monetary institutions have introduced a Chip and Pin technology to overcome a part of the problem. Now, there would be an embedded smart chip along with a traditional magnetic strip on holder’s card. Apart from swiping it out, it would also require to enter a pin number at retail stores, petrol stations, grocery shops and restaurants. This will enable for a highly secure transaction as the number of possibilities of signature theft will be compressed. This is actually a good design providing more secure and reliable transactions.

However, it has come to limelight that Pin numbers being the date of births or in relation to any personal data or over read by a stranger can lead to some nuisance. If you enter your pin number three times incorrectly, then your card will be locked and you would have to contact your bank immediately. Consequently, there is a lot of chances of minimising the risk of thefts, stolen cards or lost cards if one thinks of integrating a technology like Finger prints or eye retina for matching the personal identification of a person. Not only this is a unique recognition but also a development of stout system as a whole.

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