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One-year anniversary of chip and PIN change over - UK leads the way in chip and PIN rollout

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One-year anniversary of chip and PIN change over - UK leads the way in chip and PIN rollout

Wednesday 14 February 2007 marks the one-year anniversary of PIN Day – the official change over to chip and PIN in the UK. To recognise this milestone, APACS, the UK payments association, has issued an update on the successful progress of chip and PIN. As at January 2007 APACS figures show that:

  • More than 99.9 per cent of all chip and PIN card transactions are now PIN-verified – confirming that very few card accepting businesses have not upgraded to chip and PIN.
  • More than 185 chip and PIN transactions take place every second. This compares with 125 every second a year ago.
  • The UK 's banks and card companies have now issued 138 million chip and PIN cards - representing 97 per cent of the UK's 142 million payment cards. This is eight million more than were in circulation six months ago and over 30 million more than eighteen months ago. In 2007, remaining cards will continue to be upgraded.
  • Approximately 900,000 shop tills have been upgraded to chip and PIN. This represents 98 per cent of all shop tills in the UK – an increase of over 75,000 tills since PIN day.
  • Total card fraud losses fell in 2005 and we expect the figures to reveal that this trend continued in 2006
  • As customers have got used to using their PIN retailers have reported that transaction times have become quicker with queues in shops shorter.

Sandra Quinn, director of communications at APACS, says :

“The rollout of chip and PIN has been a tremendous success. Chip and PIN cards now account for 97 per cent of all payment cards in circulation in the UK . As a result, it is now safer than ever to use your card when shopping, and far more difficult for fraudsters to get access to your money.

“The UK is leading the way in identifying and developing technology to address card-related fraud. We are fully committed to tackling card fraud in all its guises and will continue our work to enhance security across all types of payments.”

In Europe the countries leading the transition to chip and PIN (see below) include Austria , Belgium , France , Ireland and the UK .

APACS Chip and PIN Map

Chip and PIN has made it significantly more difficult for a fraudster to use a lost or stolen card or a counterfeit card in the UK and as the rest of the world upgrades it will make it increasingly difficult for them to use them abroad. Although increases in card-not-present fraud losses have slowed, this type of fraud still accounts for nearly half of total card fraud losses*

A number of measures are currently in place to tackle card-not-present fraud, such as an automated cardholder address verification and card security code system and Verified by Visa and MasterCard SecureCode ( and ). APACS recommends that online shoppers should register with Verified by Visa or MasterCard SecureCode whenever they are given the option of doing so. Cardholders simply need to register a private password with their card issuer for use when shopping online at participating retailers.

APACS is also working with banks, card schemes, retailers, trade associations and systems vendors on the implementation of a trial of the next generation of fraud prevention solutions to help tackle fraud in non face-to-face transactions (i.e. e-banking and internet and telephone shopping). One solution builds upon chip and PIN technology and will enhance the online protection already offered by systems such as MasterCard SecureCode and Verified by Visa.

It works via a cardholder inserting their chip and PIN card into a hand-held card reader and entering their PIN. On confirming the PIN entered, the reader generates a unique, one-time only passcode, which the cardholder provides, when prompted, for authentication with the cardholder's bank. This solution helps to ensure that the person conducting business online or over the phone is the genuine customer and will make these types of transaction even safer.

Examples of this technology will start to be rolled out later in 2007.

Ten facts you may not know about chip and PIN…

  1. If you lay all the 138 million chip and PIN cards in the UK end-to-end they would stretch from London to New York and back again - that's over 7,000 miles!
  2. The term chip and PIN entered the English dictionary in August 2005.
  3. The changeover to chip and PIN was the biggest change to the way we pay since decimalisation on 15 February 1971.
  4. The first chip and PIN transaction in the UK took place at Northampton in May 2003. Some of the first stores to start accepting chip and PIN transactions included ASDA, Dolland and Aitchison, Gamestation, Holiday Inn, Phones 4U, Safeway, Tie Rack and Vodafone.
  5. Payments on plastic in the UK overtook cash payments on 29 December 2004 when Helen Carroll, a teacher from Portsmouth , made a purchase on her debit card at Tesco's West Cromwell Road branch.
  6. You can now use your chip and PIN card at 35,000 feet following the announcement by British Airways in January 2007 that it has rolled out chip and PIN terminals on its entire fleet of 850 planes.
  7. Endal, a ten-year-old guide dog living in Wales , has learnt to put a card into a chip and PIN terminal so that its owner does not have to move his wheelchair to insert it. The BBC has named Endal as the world's most intelligent dog.
  8. Despite internet rumours, the police will not be dispatched to your cash machine if you enter your PIN backwards.
  9. Based on the average lifespan of a person living in the UK (77.45 years) - you will make over 5,500 transactions on your chip and PIN card during your adult life (18 years and over); that's a transaction every four days.
  10. In 2006 a stray German Shepherd who survived a badly broken leg was named Chip 'n' Pin by RSPCA staff in Wales . As a result of a fractured femur, a pin was inserted into the young dog's leg. The combination of the pup's bright personality and the surgery led clinic staff to give him the topical name Chip 'n' Pin.

* During January to June 2006, online, phone and mail order fraud amounted to £95.3m – 46% of total plastic card fraud losses of £209.3m.


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