MasterCard is extending its zero-liability policy in the U.S. to include all MasterCard PIN-based purchases and ATM transactions, the company announced May 28.
The network has provided similar protections on signature debit and credit card transactions for quite a while. The major card networks have avoided such policies for PIN-based activity because only the owner of the card should know his PIN, making it more difficult for cardholders to prove fraudulent activity for such transactions. Shoulder-surfing, use of video and other techniques crooks use to get cardholders’ PINs has been a problem, and adding the zero-liability protections should help overcome consumers’ liability concerns.
“Cardholders will have greater peace of mind knowing that they are protected if their MasterCard-branded consumer or small-business cards are fraudulently used in stores, online or at ATMs,” MasterCard said in the policy-change announcement.
In addition, all MasterCard credit, debit, prepaid and small-business cards issued in the U.S. will now carry Identity Theft Resolution assistance. The program provides help in canceling missing cards and alerting credit reporting agencies, as well as targeting searches to detect if stolen
personal and confidential data appears online, MasterCard said.
Issuing banks and other financial institutions provide the financial indemnity against fraud. The Identity Theft coverage extension begins in July, and the zero-liability coverage extension takes effect in October.
Consumers using MasterCard for mobile payments also are protected from fraudulent purchases through MasterCard’s zero-liability policy, according to the card brand.
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