Mastercard to phase out magnetic stripes on its cards from 2024

Mastercard is phasing out the use of magnetic stripes on its credit and debit cards in

over the next decade asthe industry is moving towards safer and more convenient alternatives such as chips and contactless payments, the company announced. The company says it will be the first payments network to phase out the technology, which dates back to the 1960s.

Mastercard claims the transition will begin at2024, when bandwidth will no longer be required on new cards in regions like Europe where chip cards are already widely used. In the US, where the adoption of chip payments is slower, the transition will begin in 2027. From 2029, no new Mastercard debit or credit cards will feature a magnetic stripe, and by 2033 it will completely disappear.


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The magnetic stripes were hugean improvement over the flatbed printing machines (aka "knuckles") that cashiers used to write card data. But in the 1990s, the global EMV chip standard was introduced, which paved the way for more reliable storage of cardholder data on small integrated circuit chips embedded in cards. Currently, 86 percent of personal card transactions worldwide are carried out using EMV chips.

Although chip cards are positioned as a successormagnetic stripes, Mastercard notes that during the pandemic, the popularity of contactless payments, which can be done both with a card and digitally using most modern smartphones, has skyrocketed. In the first quarter of this year, the number of contactless transactions increased by 1 billion compared to last year, the report said. Globally, in the second quarter of this year, 45% of in-person transactions were contactless.

Source: mastercard

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