The Association for Payment and Clearing Services (Apacs) has confirmed Northampton will be the location of a large-scale public trial by banks and retailers of the use of PINs (personal identification numbers) at point of sale.
Apacs, the umbrella body for the UK payments industry, announced the trial in February this year and says the initiative will be vital in preparing for a national roll-out of PIN verification for all credit and debit card transactions by 2005.
Full details of the trial have not yet been disclosed as Apacs is still in consultation with local retailers, banks, and government bodies. But it is understood to be aimed at ensuring a smooth transition for retailers to PIN-based payments and making sure businesses are receiving the right information.
UK consumers currently authorise payments at point of sale by signing a receipt. The PIN-based system, entailing a mass-market migration to chip cards, is expected to more than halve UK fraud losses, which currently exceed £1 million per day.