ASIA UNITED Bank Corp. (AUB) has completed its migration to microchip-based bank cards, meeting the end-June deadline set by the central bank.
In an interview, AUB Operations and Technology Head Wilfredo E. Rodriguez, Jr. said the Ng-led lender has already migrated completely to Europay Mastercard Visa (EMV) chip enabled cards, phasing out the old magnetic stripe cards.
“We have actually migrated to EMV. As a precaution, we have deactivated the non-EMV cards, so today we are 100% compliant,” Mr. Rodriguez said on the sidelines of AUB’s annual stockholders’ meeting last Friday.
In a previous interview, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Chuchi G. Fonacier said the regulator will not extend the deadline to shift to EMV technology by the month’s end.
An EMV card contains a microprocessor chip which creates a unique transaction code for each payment, making transactions more secure than the magnetic stripe cards.
Apart from card replacement, the central bank also requires lenders to upgrade their back end and ATMs to accommodate EMV transactions by the end of the month.
Mr. Rodriguez added that the bank set a Dec. 31, 2017 deadline for its clients to switch cards, fully deactivating the magnetic stripe cards at the start of February.
“We have deactivated them to force them to replace it,” he said.
Should inactive AUB clients wish to replace their card, Mr. Rodriguez said all they have to do is to go to their branch. “It will not take them long because they just have to visit and get their card instantly and personalized.”
Beyond June 30, banks who have not yet deployed EMV cards and upgraded ATMs and point-of-sale terminals could face sanctions and penalties from the BSP.
AUB, the 14th biggest bank in the country in asset terms as of end-2017, saw its net profit rise in the first quarter to P797.7 million by 21.3% on the back of double-digit growth in its core lending businesses.
Shares in AUB closed at P59.50 apiece on Wednesday, up 35 centavos or 0.59%. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal