PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The new credit card with a chip is a response to all those credit card breaches at stores like Target, Kmart, Staples, and Home Depot.
But if you think it’s going to provide consumers total protection from fraud, think again.
“Were moving in the right direction. A lot of people are saying we’re moving from the 50’s to the 80’s now,” Prof. Audrey Guskey of Duquesne University said on Thursday.
America is behind the rest of the world which has moved to a chip and pin technology while we’re a step behind with just a chip.
“The chip plus using a pin, which is what they do in just about all the rest of the world, is about as good as you can do at the point of sale in stores,” Paula Rosenblum told KDKA money editor Jon Delano.
Rosenblum. a retail analyst with an expertise in technology, says a chip card without a pin is better than nothing but not the best safeguard against fraud.
So why aren’t American banks and credit card providers moving to chip and pin?
“Jon, if I knew the answer I would tell you,” said Rosenblum. “What the banks are adamant about is that consumers won’t be able to remember the pin.”
A chip without a pin is not the only reason fraud is likely to continue.
Like many banks, PNC will start to issue cards with chips later this month. But if your retailer uses the traditional, old-fashioned swipe machine, that chip offers no protection at all.
So you may have to ask your retailer, have they upgraded their equipment.
Upgrading to read the chip is expensive for the retailer, but not doing that runs a huge risk.
“In today’s environment, the credit card provider and the banks have the liability in the event of a data breach,” said Rosenblum. “If the retailer does not implement the ability to read the chip and they stick with magnetic stripe, they incur the liability in the event of a data breach.”
In other words, if a breach occurs with a chip card, the retailer not the bank bears the responsibility.