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Chip-and-pin payment terminal

Chip and pin machine

Chip-and-pin payment terminal help ‘not clear’

Many shoppers who have difficulties entering their Pin on a machine when they pay are unaware that an alternative is available.

The UK Payments Council, which oversees payments strategy, said that banks must offer a chip and signature card.

In addition, retailers are obliged to accept these cards.

They are the same as standard Chip-and-pin cards, but when inserted into a card terminal a signature is automatically requested.

Chip and signature cards can be provided to anyone who has difficulty entering their Pin, owing to problems in pressing the numbers on a terminal, visual impairment, or memory or mobility problems.

‘Control’

“Card payments using Chip-and-pin are now such an integral part of daily life, both for cardholders and retailers, that we hardly even give them a conscious thought,” said Adrian Kamellard, chief executive of the Payments Council.

“Yet there are many cardholders only using a signature, which is why it is vital that retailers know that they can accept chip and signature cards from these customers with confidence.

“They just need to follow the prompt on their point-of-sale terminal which will advise them to accept a signature,” he said.

Charities have welcomed the renewed guidance to retailers about chip and signature cards, as more people could require these cards among an ageing population.

“For some, the cards mean that they can have total control over their finances and will not have to ask someone else to get cash for them,” said Michelle Mitchell, charity director general of Age UK.

“It is important that the public is aware that chip and signature cards are available from banks and building societies and that every retailer is obliged to accept them.”

However, chip and signature cards are not accepted at self-service check-out machines in places like supermarkets and petrol stations.

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