Credit card payment methods have evolved dramatically over the years, from manual credit card imprinters to magnetic strip cards to cards with a computer chip that are inserted in a reader device.
Get ready for another evolution.
Contactless credit card payments – now possible with many newer credit cards and at an increasing number of merchants – are about to hit it big in the U.S. in 2019 and 2020. This allows for tap-and-go payments with the same strong security assurances as chip cards. It’s a bit of a technological catch-up for physical credit cards, as many U.S. consumers already use credit cards wirelessly through mobile payment platforms on smart phones or watches.
What Are Contactless Credit Card Payments?
Contactless credit cards are powered with technology known as near-field communication to allow the card to communicate with a contactless-enabled checkout terminal for payment.
To determine whether your card is enabled for contactless payments, look for a graphic with four curved vertical bars on the front of your card that looks similar to a Wi-Fi symbol. If the merchant has a card reader terminal that’s activated for contactless payment, your card can connect with it.
The communication between the high-frequency radio waves generated by the terminal and the chip in the card allows the consumer to tap the card on the terminal and go, as long as the card is within a couple inches of the reader, says David Tushie, CEO of Magellan Consulting, which provides advisory services in the global payment and secure ID card industry.
“We’re just starting the rapid growth rate” in contactless cards, Tushie says. “Expect over the next three years’ time frame, we’ll start to see the majority of cards in the U.S. issued with dual interface.” Dual interface cards can be inserted into an EMV chip reader terminal or used for contactless payments.
Contactless Credit Card Payment Security
Transactions with contactless-capable credit cards that have EMV technology are just as secure as if you put the credit card into the card reader at the point of sale. EMV chip cards, which became widespread only a few years ago in the U.S., have dramatically cut down on the amount of counterfeit credit card fraud….Read More>>