Ample time allows tough credit card conversion

Converting credit cards' magnetic chip from plain magnetic to Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) is a tough job for banks but manageable given the ample time given by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to do the task, a leading authority in credit card said.

Simon Calasanz, president and chief executive officer of RCBC Bankard, said their ample time to migrate their cards to EMV is enough to meet the Jan. 1, 2017 deadline.

"It was tough but manageable, since there was ample time given by the circular to convert," the official explained to the Daily Tribune.

The circular issued by the central bank mandating the migration of cards, including automated teller machine cards, has been given as early as late-2014, thus banks have barely three years to comply.

However, the official said he cannot speak about the state of migration of ATMs as there are around 40 million of the all over the country compared to credit cards that are roughly 7.5 million.

"I can only comment for the credit card side," he said.

According to Calasanz, since there is ample time to convert, the services of the 14 banks that issue credit cards were not disrupted, particularly those engaged in foreign transaction wherein the billing is complicated unlike most credit card holders think.

"Many card issuers did this over a period of three years so operations disruption was minimized. You can already see the positive effects of the conversion because card skimming and fraud are already on a downward trend and should be minimal by next year," the official, who also served as president of Credit Card Association of the Philippines, said.

Source: Tribune

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