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Steward eliminating magnetic stripe cards, switch to EMV technology

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Steward bank is phasing out local currency magnetic stripe cards and with effect from 30 April 2021, these cards will no longer work.

Customers have been notified to get the new chip and PIN cards at bank branches.

A magnetic stripe card is a type of pass that permits the user to complete electronic transactions, the “stripe” contains embedded information that identifies its use.

In a notification to is customers Steward said,” Your ZWL Magstripe card will be phased out effective 30/04/2021. Visit any branch or WhatsApp 0772191191 to have a new Chip & PIN card delivered to you.”

Magnetic stripe cards have been targets for fraud since their introduction while Data thieves can use devices that are capable of skimming and copying the data in the stripe.

The information is used to create cloned cards that can access the account in stores or tap into the user’s online accounts.

Such cases caused the development of secure transactions and permit access.

The EMV microchip, or chip-and-PIN, technology is replacing magnetic stripe technology, especially in credit cards.

Microchip cards use a superior system: a unique, single-use encrypted digital signature that is harder to copy. A PIN entry or signature may be required for an additional level of security.

Some banks in Zimbabwe are said to have suffered losses from fraudulent activities linked to the use of the old magnetic strip in debit cards.

However, financial sector in Zimbabwe that issue debit and credit cards has been making a transition from magnetic stripe cards (magstripe) to EMV technology to curb cloning of bank cards and related frauds which have been on the rise in the country.

leona Mandengu

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