Visa Canada launches first debit cards

Source: Visa

Visa Canada today announced the launch of the company's first debit cards in the Canadian marketplace.

CIBC is the first Canadian issuer to offer Visa Debit through its CIBC Advantage Card, which will be available in branches beginning today. In Canada, the CIBC Advantage Card will provide Canadian consumers with the ability to shop widely online, by phone or mail and in more than 200 countries and territories around the world using funds directly from their bank accounts.

"Visa has supported the adoption of debit as a convenient and secure payment alternative for consumers and businesses around the globe for more than 20 years, and we are pleased to bring more choice and added benefits to Canadian consumers with the introduction of Visa Debit," said Tim Wilson, Head of Visa Canada. "Visa Debit's expanded functionality enables consumers to shop online, over the phone, in-store at millions of merchant locations internationally, or to set-up recurring bill payments - with all the security features and protections that come with using a Visa card."

Debit cardholders will continue to be able to withdraw cash from automated banking machines (ABMs) and purchase goods and services at a Canadian merchant with funds directly from their bank account. At the register, the CIBC Advantage Card will be processed through Interac®, Canada's existing debit network.

Purchases made online, over the phone, by mail or internationally will be processed over Visa's network and will offer purchase protection with Visa's multiple layers of security including:

Visa Zero Liability Policy - Visa cardholders are not liable for unauthorized use of their card if their card is lost, stolen or if their card number is used fraudulently.

The Visa E-Promise - provides additional protection when using a Visa card to shop online, by mail, or by phone if the cardholder has tried, and has been unsuccessful, in resolving a dispute directly with the merchant.

Verified by Visa (VbV) - offers greater protection against unauthorized use of Visa cards online, by registering a password and shopping online at VbV enabled merchants.
Three-digit code (CVV2) - provides a crucial security feature on the back of Visa cards that helps merchants validate purchases made with Visa cards online and by phone.
All Visa Debit cards in Canada will also be chip-enabled, complementing Visa's migration to chip technology in Canada.

According to a recent Visa survey, 70 percent of Canadian consumers expressed interest in a debit card that enabled them to purchase goods and services online. 65 percent of Canadians want to use their debit card when shopping in the United States and internationally.

Consumers around the world are voting with their wallets and increasingly turning to debit because it offers greater money management and control, security, and convenience over cash and cheques - with acceptance at millions of merchant locations worldwide. For the 12 months ended June 30, 2010, payments volume on Visa Debit cards grew at 18 percent; similarly, transactions on Visa Debit cards increased by 18 percent, as consumers continue to migrate spending once made with cash and cheques to electronic payments.

Visa Debit cards are accepted at millions of merchant outlets and over 1.7 million ABMs around the globe.

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