Credit, debit cards’ online use facility to be disabled by March 16, 2020, if never used till then
March 16 is a date that should matter to you if you have never used your debit or credit card for online transactions. The online or contactless transactions facility will be mandatorily disabled on your debit or credit card on March 16, 2020 if you have never used it for such transactions.
To increase security of debit or credit card transactions, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued a notification on January 15, 2020, asking card issuers to disable online transactions and contactless payment services of all those credit and debit cards that have never been used for an online or contactless transaction. Cardholders now have only time till March 16 to use such cards for online, contactless transactions to stop them being disabled for these transactions.
A contactless transaction occurs when one buys products or services via debit or credit card using radio frequency identification (RFID) technology enabled on the cards.
According to the RBI notification, “For existing cards, issuers may take a decision, based on their risk perception, whether to disable the card not present (domestic and international) transactions, card present (international) transactions and contactless transaction rights. Existing cards which have never been used for online (card not present) /international /contactless transactions shall be mandatorily disabled for this purpose. The directions are issued under Section 10(2) of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007.”
Over the years, the volume and value of transactions made through debit and credit cards have increased manifold. Therefore, to improve user convenience and enhance the security of card transactions, RBI had also asked card issuers including banks to provide the following facilities to cardholders by March 16.
1. Facility to switch on/ off and set/ modify transaction limits (within the overall card limit, if any, set by the issuer) for all types of transactions – domestic and international, at PoS / ATMs / online transactions / contactless transactions, etc.;
2. The facility should be provided on a 24×7 basis through several channels – mobile application/ internet banking/ ATMs/ Interactive Voice Response (IVR). This facility may also be offered at branches/ offices, said the notification
3. SMS alerts/ information/ status, etc., through/ e-mail should be sent to the cardholder, as and when there is any change in the status of the card.
However, as per the RBI notification, the above provisions are not mandatory for prepaid gift cards and those used in mass transit systems such as the metro.