The Handelsbanken announcement is most welcome. It's interesting how some ideas keep being revisited. I remember, a number of years ago, being involved in a feasibility study for a UK bank that wanted to do something similar. In the end, the technological
challenges were too great at that time (and more important things pushed it down the priority rankings) and I don't think it was done in the end, so if they've now been solved on one processing platform, hopefully the solution can be replicated elsewhere.
I would certainly welcome a product where I can exercise greater control over where my card can be used - and when - and thus reduce the possibility of someone else helping themselves to my credit limit. I quite agree with the comment that, whilst the issuer
normally stands the loss, the experience for the cardholder is most unpleasant.
The principal issues would seem to me to revolve around how easy, safe and quickly the change in status can be made; for instance, if you forgot to change the status before going on holiday, I would hope that it can be quickly changed to enable usage once
you've realised that you can't use your card and you're in a situation abroad where you need to use it - urgently (say when you're in a restaurant, need to pay the bill and you don't have your washing-up gloves with you)... It would also be useful to set
start and end dates for when the status change is valid, to ensure that foreign usage was switched off when you got back. Hopefully all these issues have been addressed in this product enhancement.
I hope that issuers across the UK can introduce these types of measures soon, as they would be a useful tool in the fight against fraud. I'm sure someone will correct me if that is already possible in the UK, but none of my card providers has advised me
of the functionality yet.