Barclays Bank is set to roll out handheld chip-and-pin card readers to 500,000 of its two million online banking customers by the end of the year to protect them against fraud.
It is the first UK bank to offer authentication which uses a card reader to validate transactions, just over a year after UK payments association Apacs issued a common industry standard for card readers.
The device works by reading the chip on a card and generating an eight-digit passcode to validate entry onto Barclays’ online banking portal and then enabling users to validate transactions using the four-digit Pin they would use in store to ‘sign’ transactions.
Barclays is initially targeting customers who use their online bank account to set up payments to new third party accounts with these Pinsentry devices.
The card reader will replace the need for passcodes and memorable words, which the bank said could be compromised by Trojan viruses that hijack sensitive information on a consumer’s computer, enabling hackers to set up third-party transfers to steal money from accounts.
Customers who simply wish to use online banking to view their accounts and pay bills or established payees will be able to continue to use online banking as before, without the need for Pinsentry.
Barnaby Davis, director for electronic banking for Barclays, said, “Pinsentry is the next generation of fraud prevention technology and Barclays is proud to be the first organisation in the UK to roll it out to its customers.
The popularity of Barclays’ online banking service comes down to convenience and security and the introduction of PINsentry will enhance both of these features.”
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