The latest innovations are shaped to revolutionize the way everyday people carry out day-to-day activities. Contactless smart cards represent one of such innovations. It is a secure method for consumers to buy products or services with the aid of a debit card, credit card, or smart card (which is alternatively called a chip card) via radio frequency identification (RFID) technology or near-field communication (NFC).
For more than 30 years, magnetic stripe cards have thrived excellently in the market for transmission of payment data. Magnetic Stripe Cards store data through the modification of the magnetism that is present in tiny iron-based magnetic particles on a band of magnetic material on these cards.
Prior to the invention of Contactless Smart Cards, the payment cards in existence were magnetic stripe cards. With time, however, many government and industries saw the limitations of magnetic cards. This led to the use of contactless smart cards as a replacement to the magnetic stripe cards.
Contactless Smart Cards stand tall over magnetic stripe cards in 10 ways:
1. Smart Cards Are Very Secure
Smart cards come equipped with electronic keys and some encryption algorithm. This gives more storage space alongside safe reading and writing of data when compared to magnetic. There have been a huge number of fraud cases in transit with magnetic cards. This is as a result of the low security of the technology. Smart Card came as a replacement which has significantly reduced fraud.
There are also some safeguards to contactless systems. A report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston stated that to do a transaction, the cardholder must actively participate. The payment’s device is always on the customer’s hand. Unauthorized scanning is also pretty difficult because of the little distance between the RFID chip and the reader.
2. Smart Cards Are Difficult to Hack
Smart cards come with on board microprocessor, making it nearly impossible to duplicate, hack or clone. Magnetic strip card, on the other hand, is pretty easy to duplicate and hack. It is not even expensive.
As a result, investing in a smart card system guarantees that you are protected against fraud. Over time, the ROI from this will be worth it.
3. Smart Cards Have Low Maintenance Cost and Are More Reliable
If you are thinking about the expenses involved in switching from magnetic to the smart card, consider the long-term savings. With smart cards, you don’t get to incur high maintenance costs. These reduced expenses alone are enough to take care of the costs, required to switch to smart cards.
It is also important to note that smart cards are very durable and reliable. The failure rate of a smart card is 0.004% — meaning 1 in every 25,000 transactions fails, compared to 0.02% of the magnetic card type. The maintenance cost of a smart card is zero as the validator has no mechanical parts.
Also, smart cards are not only strong, but also resistant to water damage. They are long-lasting and require fewer replacements when compared to magnetic strip cards, which can be damaged easily by normal wear and tear, magnetic fields, and even exposure to moisture.
4. Smart Cards Are Easier and Faster to Use
In a very short moment, a smart card can perform fast and complicated transactions. With each stage of travel, it automatically allocates charges. Also, the fact that a smart card can be recharged via mobile or internet improves user’s experience.
Smart cards are fast in that transmission of payment data occurs in about 300 milliseconds. You need not supply a ticket to any machine or go through a turnstile. This improves user’s experience which, in turn, reduces overall time, engenders greater operational efficiency, and cuts down on cost of service provision.
5. A Smart Card Is the Best When Data Privacy Is Critical
The smart card comes with digital signature options. With this, it is easy to determine if the information on the card has been tampered with. As opposed to magnetic card, smart card comes with secure chip tech and other features which make it difficult to tamper with the information on it.
It also brings about a strong means to authenticate the identity of people. This reduces all forms of fraud, identity theft, and any attempt to outsmart the system. All the technologies and sophisticated features on the card make it difficult for anyone to access the data on the card or even clone it.
6. Smart Cards Reduce Operating Costs and Reduce Tendencies of Fare Evasion
While switching to a contactless smart card is costly, it is a worthy investment. As discussed earlier, smart card obviates the need for maintenance cost which makes up for the investment cost. While the cost of producing magnetic cards are cheap, smart cards stands out in that the overall cost is reduced when you think in terms of the low equipment cost and the durability of the option.
7. Smart Cards Provide More Business Intelligence Benefits
With the availability of the storage system as well as the capacity to link to other databases, there is powerful business intelligence which helps in route planning. The enterprise also benefits when they correlate smart card data to provide solutions for KPIs in firms, strategic planning events, and workforce management.
8. Smart Card Users Enjoys Varieties of Forms
Magnetic strips were designed majorly to be on cards. Contactless smart cards, on the other hand, can be used in various forms. Hence, it finds application in smart phones, wearables, vehicles, key fobs, cards, and almost anything that a customer will likely carry around.
With the momentous pace of growth of Internet of Things device, contactless smart cards might soon eliminate the need to carry a card around.
9. Information Update
Unlike Magnetic Stipe Cards, information on Contactless Smart Cards can be updated. For example, Magnetic cards don’t store the cardholders account information which necessitates communication with banks. Contactless Smart Cards store this information and updates it with each transaction so there’s no need to contact the bank.
10. A Secure Carrier for Biometric Template
Contactless smart cards can also be used by firms or organizations that will like to utilize biometrics for a number of things, including IT security application, physical access, and so on. Smart cards are the best accessory to complement biometrics installation and are recommended for installations and fixtures that will span multiple sites.
By having the template on the smart card, use of the card will be simplified which will allow many people to opt for the system. It will also remove the need for myriads of wiring that will be needed for biometric template management.
In a Nutshell
Quite a number of businesses and individuals alike are beginning to see the benefits of contactless smart card system. As discussed above, contactless smart cards stand out with amazing features. Thus, it is not surprising if the spotlight is gradually turning on the option as a more sophisticated and cost-effective payment system.
However, it is not without any risks. It is advisable to talk to professionals and do in-depth research on them before making the decision to switch. If you do decide to switch to contactless cards, a great place to find quality cards and access information you need is Cardzgroup.