Chip and pin credit cards cause confusion

19 September 2005
New chip and pin credit cards introduced last year to stamp out fraud are proving difficult to use for thousands of Brits.

Recent research by charity Help the Aged has found that elderly people in particular are having difficulty with the cards because they cannot remember their pin number.

A spokesman from the charity, David Sinclair, said that the 750,000 people in Britain suffering from dementia will struggle with the new system and could be put off using their cards.

He said: "We have come across some appalling cases where customers have been forced to leave their shopping behind because they could not remember their pin.

"We would like to see an amendment to the banking code to force banks to offer information on chip and signature."

Help the Aged are calling for banks to reintroduce the signature system alongside chip and pin to help elderly customers become accustomed to remembering their pin number.

Earlier this month chip and pin cards were accused of not being secure, due to "lack of vigilance at point of sale," according to Dr Emily Finch, a researcher at University of Anglia.

The university tested the effectiveness of chip and pin cards by using each others's cards and pretending to forget their pin number so that they could sign a signature slip instead.

The resreachers found that they were never challenged, even when they used a card belonging to someone of the opposite sex.

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