BofA begins roll out of chip cards to American consumers

BofA begins roll out of chip cards to American consumers

Bank of America has begun rolling out EMV chip credit cards to consumers, citing the increased acceptance and security offered by the technology for international travellers.

Having begun issuing chip cards to corporate and commercial customers in the US earlier this year, the bank is now widening the programme out to consumers.

All newly issued Merrill Lynch, US Trust Accolades, BankAmericard Travel Rewards, BankAmericard Privileges, and Virgin Atlantic travel credit cards will include EMV as well as mag-stripes. Customers with other cards will also be able to get chips upon request.

Susan Faulkner, executive, consumer and small business products, says: "The new chip-enabled cards will improve convenience and security of customers' transactions when traveling abroad. We want our customers to have the best possible experience while making purchases with their credit cards anywhere in the world."

With the US increasingly isolated in a world with more than one billion EMV cards, Citi and Wells Fargo have also both made moves to offer frequent travellers chip options.

Chip cards will soon be widely accepted at home as well thanks to decisions by Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover to set out a timetable for requiring US processors to be able to support merchant acceptance of the technology by April 2013 before switching liability to retailers that have not upgraded in October 2015.

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