Bank of Valletta has started rolling out its contactless cards, ushering in a new digital era for the bank in Malta.
Speaking about the project, Electronic Banking Executive Ivo Camilleri explained, “The contactless card upgrade ushers in a new era of digital banking in Malta. These cards combine the same security afforded by traditional chip-and-pin cards, with the convenience afforded by wireless payments. Paying for low-value items is for the first time easier than paying cash. Now cardholders can simply tap the card on the EPOS machine at the retailer’s and the transaction is processed in seconds. There is no need to enter a PIN or sign on the slip as long as the transaction’s value is below €20.”
Mr Camilleri said that this migration necessitates the replacement of all EPOS machines as well as the individual cards. “The past few months have seen the roll out of the project at retail outlets where the bank’s POS machines are gradually being enabled to accept contactless cards. This process will continue over the coming months until all POS machines within retail establishments are contactless-enabled. This second phase of the project is now being extended to the upgrade of all eligible debit and credit cards. The new contactless cards, which have also been given a fresh look with new artwork, allow the cardholder to effect regular contact transactions, whilst also enabling contactless transactions.”
As with all electronic payment methods, the issue of security remains a prerogative with contactless technology. In fact as Mr Camilleri underlined, “Contactless cards are equipped with the traditional chip-based security features which now also combine contactless specific technology to enable the card to interact securely with a contactless terminal. These security features work in tandem with other security measures that are specifically designed to ensure cardholder’s peace of mind when taking advantage of the convenience of making secure contactless payments with their new card”. Whilst reiterating his confidence that the contactless card will increase the scope of card payments, Mr Camilleri explained that educating its customers remains a prerogative for the bank. “In this regard, the bank will be undertaking a series of educational initiatives, using various channels of communication to appeal to the widest possible audience” he said. “Our aim remains that of educating the public, whilst encouraging more people to switch from conventional payment methods such as cash and cheques to more user-friendly digital alternatives.”
Additional information regarding the contactless implementation may be obtained by visiting www.bov.com or contacting the BOV Customer Service Centre on 2131 2020.