Introducing EMV Chip Cards

Enhanced Security for your West Bank Debit Card

West Bank now offers debit cards with chip technology. The embedded computer chip helps to provide more security and wider international acceptance.

A microchip embedded in the card adds a new layer of protection against fraud for purchases made at the point of sale. Information programmed into the chip is personalized for your account and each transaction generates a unique code, adding an extra safeguard against unauthorized use and counterfeiting.

These cards are already in wide use around the world and are now becoming the standard in the U.S.


Follow these steps to use your card at a chip-enabled terminal:

Start the payment process by ‘swiping’ your card, just as you do today. 

If the terminal is chip-enabled, you will be instructed to insert your card.

1. Insert your card, face up and chip end into the chip-enabled terminal.

2. Leave the card in the terminal during the entire transaction.

3. Follow the instructions on the screen and either sign your name or enter your PIN as needed. Be sure to remove your card and take your receipt when the transaction is complete.


If a merchant isn't using a new chip-enabled terminal yet

Your payment will process as it normally does from your initial ‘swipe’. Chip cards will continue to have the magnetic stripe on the back.

Online or phone purchases

Provide your card information as you have done in the past. Chip cards will not change the way payments are made online or by telephone.


When will the change happen?

Even though chip cards have started being issued in the U.S. and some merchants have already installed chip-enabled card terminals for payment, the entire conversion process is expected to take a few years to complete.

That's why chip cards will continue to have a magnetic stripe on the back. That way, if a merchant's terminal or an ATM is not yet chip-enabled, your transaction can still be processed using the magnetic stripe as it is today.


Frequently Asked Questions

When will I get my chip card?

Your personal debit card will be replaced with a new chip debit card before December 31, 2016. Once your new card arrives, be sure to activate it for use right away and destroy your old card. There is no extra charge for the new chip card.

Once I activate the new chip card, is there anything else I need to do?

If you have any recurring payments or online accounts tied to your current debit card, you’ll want to contact your merchant(s) or service provider(s) and provide them with your new expiration date.

What are chip cards?

A chip card - also called a smart card or an EMV card - is a debit or credit card that contains a microprocessor that enhances the security of cards during point-of-sale transactions.

These cards, already is use in much of the world, use a security standard originally developed by Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) as a way to fight card fraud resulting from theft, skimming and counterfeiting. The EMV technology has been adopted by the other major card brands and issuers.


How do I use them?

Begin the payment process by ‘swiping’ your card, just as you do today. If the payment terminal is chip-enabled, you will be asked to insert your card.

1.Insert the card, face up and chip end first, into the terminal.

2.Leave the card in the terminal during the entire transaction.

3.Follow the instructions on the screen and either sign or enter your PIN as needed. Be sure to remove your card and take your receipt when the transaction is complete.

For merchants without chip-enabled terminals, your payment will process as it normally does from your initial swipe.

Is a chip card more secure than my current card?

Yes. Chip cards add an additional layer of security to the safeguards that already protect your card. Each time you use your chip card at an EMV enabled terminal, the transaction is encrypted to create a secure authentication. This makes it harder to counterfeit your card or to use it fraudulently for in-store purchases.

Will chip cards prevent fraud?

While the chip card makes transactions more secure, the merchant acceptance of EMV cards is not fully implemented.  Many merchants will continue to accept cards through swipe method only.  The information contained within the magnetic stripe is still susceptible to create counterfeit cards which can be used at non-EMV compliant merchants and online fraud.   


Can I use my West Bank EMV chip card anywhere?

Yes. Your chip card can be used virtually anywhere is MasterCard is accepted in the U.S. and around the world. If a merchant has a chip-enabled card terminal, you will insert your card during the transaction. In the U.S., you will still be able to 'swipe' your card to make your payment if a merchant has a regular terminal. You will need a PIN to be able to make a transaction at an ATM.


Do I need to sign the back of the card?

Yes. You still need to sign the back of your card.


Can I use it to make purchases online or by phone?

Yes. You can use your chip card to make these purchases as you do today.


Can I use my card at an ATM?

Yes. For ATM transactions, insert your card into terminal and follow the instructions on the screen. Depending on the type of ATM and if it is chip enabled, you might be prompted to re-insert your card. Leave the card in the ATM until the transaction is complete and the card is released, and then remove your card and any money you might have withdrawn.


What is the difference between chip and signature and chip and PIN?

You may be asked to provide your signature or enter your PIN to complete a transaction when you use your card. You will need to use your PIN at ATMs and it may be required at some unattended terminals such as fuel pumps and payment kiosks.


What if my card is lost or stolen?

It's important to report a lost or stolen card immediately. Keep a record of the telephone number on the back of your card and call it if necessary.


Will chip cards prevent data breaches?

While chip cards won't prevent the types of large-scale data breaches that have hit some merchants, they do make it difficult to produce counterfeit cards from that stolen data.


Does a chip card contain more information about me that could be stolen?

No, a chip card does not contain any information about you that isn’t in your magnetic stripe cards – just your name, account number, and expiration date. 


Contact us for more information

Call us at 1-855-464-5407 or stop in to one of our branches if you have additional questions about EMV chip cards.