Social media has done it again. Recent viral messages shared on social media disseminated information about the exercise of replacing the existing ATM or debit cards to personal identification number (PIN)-based cards.
The messages alleged that a penalty of RM12.70 will be charged to replace the cards, and if cardholders fail to replace their cards by the deadlines set by the banks, the cards would stop functioning.
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has refuted these claims, stressing that replacement of cards is free and ATM cardholders will still be able to perform cash withdrawals with their existing cards.
There are, however, charges if the cards are lost, stolen or damaged due to the cardholder’s misuse.
Although cardholders will still be able to perform cash withdrawals, the central bank urged the public to stop delaying their replacement of cards.
“The replacement of the existing signature-based payment cards with the new PIN-based cards is an industry initiative aimed to further enhance the security of the use of payment cards at the point-of-sale (POS) terminals in merchant outlets.
“The current initiative to migrate to PIN-based payment cards for transactions at POS terminals is to improve security and protect cardholders’ interest,” BNM said in a statement.
Replacement cards can be done at the banks for free, and banks need to provide cardholders with adequate notice and a reasonable time period for the replacement of cards before disabling the existing cards for such transactions.
Signature-based payment cards have been replaced by banks progressively with PIN-based cards, and the exercise is targeted to complete by January 1, 2017.
Cardholders will have a six-month period to adapt to the usage of PIN-based cards during transactions at the merchants’ POS terminals.
Come July 1, all locally issued cards will only be able to transact at POS terminals in Malaysia with a PIN entry, and signature verification will no longer be facilitated.