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International jet set

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24th Apr 2006 | 08:52

Next week I am going to Nairobi for AfNOG, the African Network Operators Group 2006 event. A significant part of this is a workshop teaching the technical skills needed to run an ISP. I'll be going in place of Philip Hazel to teach people about Exim.

One thing I noticed this morning is that the credit cards that I have been issued this year do not have magnetic stripes: they are chip-and-pin only! This is rather inconvenient for international travel. Fortunately I still have an older credit card with a stripe - though it is one we want to get rid of - and my bank is sending me a replacement card which might arrive before I leave.

Anyone else who is planning to travel on new credit cards should check this. Of course banks like you to warn them beforehand anyway, so that their fraud detection systems are prepared.

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Comments {14}

The Bellinghman

from: bellinghman
date: 24th Apr 2006 09:23 (UTC)

How very odd. My March issue Mastercard still has the stripe. It's not black, (it's a light grey to match the card colour) but it's still there, in the standard position.

(And yes, it does work abroad.)

I'd not have expected all credit card readers to be chip&pin enabled yet.

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The Bellinghman

from: bellinghman
date: 24th Apr 2006 09:25 (UTC)

(Note to self - finish first coffee of day. It's 2006, not 2004.)

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Tony Finch

from: fanf
date: 24th Apr 2006 09:32 (UTC)

Hmm, my HSBC MasterCard also has a silver stripe, but the bank told me it isn't magnetic. Lets see what the replacement looks like.

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The Bellinghman

from: bellinghman
date: 24th Apr 2006 09:37 (UTC)

Hmmm.

Possibly, they've 'demagnetised' the stripe since 2004. It seems a little odd, though.

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from: techiebloke
date: 24th Apr 2006 20:16 (UTC)

I used my amex blue card recently in a old POS terminal that didn't do anything but mag-stripe + signature. It has a silver stripe.

I would be very suspicious of anyone from a call-center (or actually in a high street bank) telling me pretty much anything technical; the question "does the mag stripe work?" may be interpreted as "if I reeeeaaaaaallllly whine in the shop, can I sign for things rather than having to remember my PIN?" to which the easiest way of saying "No, dumbass, you'll have to remember a PIN" is to claim that the mag stripe doesn't work. It's mostly true - the mag stripe doesn't (shouldn't?) work in the UK - and has the advantage of not calling the customer a dumbass to their face.

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grey strip here

from: jmason
date: 24th Apr 2006 11:44 (UTC)

Hmm. I recently received a new card, and it too has the grey stripe. I had been assuming it was just a different colour, but still functional...

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Tony Finch

Re: grey strip here

from: fanf
date: 24th Apr 2006 13:18 (UTC)

Is .ie afflicted with chip&pin too, then?

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Re: grey strip here

from: anonymous
date: 10th May 2006 20:38 (UTC)

well, I returned from California just 3 months ago, so I'm not entirely sure what the situation is here ;) -- but it does appear likely, yes.

In particular, Trintech is an Irish company, and a recent press release noted that the PINPad 5000 (the model at the center of the Shell furore) was also sold for use in Ireland.

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ξενική μὲν, χρησίμη δὲ

from: tla
date: 24th Apr 2006 21:35 (UTC)

Predictably enough, one of the few times my (American) card has been stopped was the one occasion when I called the credit card company to let them know I was about to travel abroad.

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Peter Maydell

from: pm215
date: 24th Apr 2006 23:25 (UTC)

The Guardian says that APACS says that most ATMs are still magstripe only. So either:
  • your bank is issuing cards which aren't usable in lots of ATMs
  • your bank is misleading you
  • APACS/the Guardian are misleading me

Take your pick...

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hello

from: anonymous
date: 17th Jun 2006 23:49 (UTC)

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hello

from: anonymous
date: 26th Jun 2006 01:02 (UTC)

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hello

from: anonymous
date: 30th Jun 2006 02:26 (UTC)

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Mag stripes

from: ddvtek
date: 7th Dec 2006 02:36 (UTC)

Sounds like it will clear up on the stripes in
about 2 years.

Don
http://www.pluginready.com

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