Credit card companies use a variety of methods to help battle credit card fraud. Some have implemented the placement of an owner’s photo on their individual card, and others offer hotlines, along with “tips for protection” guidance. Now, Visa is testing another security measure: the Emue Card.
Aside from the usual security code that credit cards show, the new Emue Card generates an additional four-digit code which is changed each time the card is used. Card owners would need a pin in order to view these four numbers, which would be required to complete a transaction.
The card will be on trial until the end of the year, before which it will be tested by 500 Deloitte employees. If the trial goes well, and the card is certified by Visa, it will be up to both banks and credit card companies whether they will choose to take on the product.
Employees at Deloitte, along with anyone else who has access to the card, can expect to see a rise in safety when it comes to phone, internet, and mail order fraud. According to the BBC, thefts occurring through these mediums, known as card-not-present or CNP fraud, are continuously increasing and make up over 50 percent of all credit card fraud. An Emue Card could help to bring down this percentage because it demands more information than what can be seen on the card - those attempting to use it would have to know the pin needed to generate its additional security code. This security measure would be especially important with transactions occurring without a salesperson present to check signatures or look at photos on the cards that offer them.
The Emue Card has brought about certain obstacles in its development. One example included finding a way to help card owners avoid the accidental pressing of buttons. Developers tackled this by creating buttons which need to be “pinched” to work rather than simply pushed down.
Sandra Alzetta, head of innovation at Visa, explained another problem-prevention system underway: "One of the things we're testing is how long the battery lasts - the plan is for it to work for more than three years, which means your card should expire before it runs out of power."
Alzetta also discussed the challenge and need of global compatibility features, including “embossed characters for mechanical swipes, a magnetic strip for systems that require a signature, the fixed three digit security code and now the unique four- figure code.”
"You have to remember that our cards work across the world, and not every country or retailer has access to the level of technology we might be used to," she said.