Monday, October 27, 2003

Two pin-codes for one debit-card?

The Financieel Dagblad reports this morning about an innovation by a former debit-card/pincode victim. Mr Jantoon Roos suggested to the banking sector the use of two pincodes on one debitcard. The pincode a and b would both be 4 digits long and be used in alternation. The second pincode would be chosen by the customer himself.

The banking sector has taken the idea into consideration but explained to the inventor that it would be technically too complex and that it would confuse the consumers. But the inventor seems keen on pursuing the idea, now that he has invested a couple of thousands euro's in Patent application.

What disturbs me in the article is that it might suggest that banks would not be willing to adopt good ideas that may reduce fraud. They do adopt those ideas, yet operating and designing retail payment systems is a little more complex than people may imagine. So the chances that an outsider comes up with a brilliant solution to such industry problems are close to zero.

The exception to this rule is of course the Memo-card; this is small piece of carton on which you may encode / hide the pincode by using a four-letter word in between a number of other four letter words.