Money Insider: After chip and PIN, it's the contactless card revolution
Saturday 06 November 2010
It is almost five years since chip and pin was officially introduced in the UK, a payment mechanism that we now all take for granted. In fact, if you happen to visit parts of the world where this technology hasn't yet been implemented, it seems alien to have to sign to confirm your purchase.
The latest phase of plastic card technology is focusing on contactless payments. The project gathered pace this week as MBNA and Virgin Money announced the rollout of more than five million new contactless cards by the end of 2011. Contactless technology appeared in Britain in 2007 and it is estimated that one in every seven debit or credit cards will be enabled by the end of this year. With cheques due to be phased out by 2018, it will undoubtedly receive greater focus going forward.
Even though the maximum transaction you can undertake at a contactless terminal is £15, it is understandable that some people may feel a little apprehensive of being able to make purchases without pin authorisation. Even though card providers have security checks in place, experts feel that criminals are unlikely to target these new-style cards because of their low-value transaction limit.
As a precaution, if a contactless card is used for a number of consecutive transactions in a short space of time, the customer is asked to confirm their pin. There are also be occasional spot checks asking for pin verification as a separatesecurity measure. Despite initial concerns, there are many positives – contactless is secure and convenient and the ultra-speedy transaction times will lead to shorter queues for small purchases you make in a hurry, such as a sandwich, a coffee or The Independent.
The 'Junior Isa' will need support
the specific savings vehicle being introduced for children next autumn is welcome. However, without any incentive or contribution from the Government, and with savings rates at such a low ebb, it is difficult to see this being a great success.
It's sensible to use the term "Junior Isa" to help to get children to appreciate the benefits of tax-free savings as they grow up.We need to revive the savings habit in the UK, but with such low rates, it is a big challenge to persuade the man on the street that regular saving, no matter how small, is still a worthwhile exercise in the longer term.
Let's hope more providers will embrace the cash version of the Junior Isa compared with the dozen or so that offered the cash version of the Child Trust Fund.
RBS and NatWest's overdraft fees cut
Providers continue to tweak their tariffs for authorised and unauthorised borrowing and last week was the turn of RBS and NatWest.
It was good to see the number of fees being reduced – particularly the removal of the £20 monthly maintenance charge and £15 paid referral fee – but customers should be given more than a £6 buffer before being charged. Most RBS/NatWest customers will now be paying less, apart from those overdrawn for at least 20 days per month. The introduction of a new text and email alerts service should also help some of these customers avoid unauthorised fees.
To prevent being hit with these potentially crippling unauthorised charges, the best course of action is set up an agreed (authorised) limit with your bank in case of emergencies.
If you find yourself always overdrawn, there's possibly a more fundamental problem, and it's probably time to sit down and work out how much you're paying out each month compared with your income, and make cutbacks where you can.
Andrew Hagger is an analyst at Moneynet.co.uk
Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 4 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
- 5 'Hello mum, this is going to be hard for you to read ...'
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
- < Previous
- Next >
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £24000 per annum: Harrington Starr: A leading provider of web based m...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Secretary (Sales Team Support) - Mat...
Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are looking for an Assistant Management Ac...
£600 - £700 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Senior Investment Accounting Change...
Day In a Page
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony
A charming four-bedroom Oxfordshire cottage with oak floors and chunky-beamed ceilings, £465,000
A beautiful one-bed flat in a sought-after portered block, with access to Norland Square communal gardens
A one-bedroom flat within a Sixties school conversion with high-spec design and open-plan kitchen, close to Lambeth North Tube, £435,000