From March 16 onwards, online and contactless transaction facilities would be mandatorily disabled on those debit or credit cards that have been never used for such services ever before. In a notification issued by the Reserve Bank of India on January 15, the apex bank had announced the move.
The notification asked all card issuers, including banks, to disable online transactions and contactless payment services of all credit and cards that had never been used before. It had given the cardholders time till March 16 to use their debit and credit cards for online and contactless transactions if they didn't want them to be permanently blocked.
According to the RBI, this move has been sanctioned to increase the security of debit and credit card transactions. "For existing cards, issuers may take a decision, based on their risk perception, whether to disable the card not present (domestic and international) transactions, card-present (international) transactions and contactless transaction rights. Existing cards which have never been used for online (card not present) /international /contactless transactions shall be mandatorily disabled for this purpose. The directions are issued under Section 10(2) of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007," the notification had said.
The RBI has also asked all card issuers to provide certain facilities to cardholders by March 16, including the facility to switch on or off and set or modify transaction limits for all kinds of transactions. The limit, however, should exceed the overall card limit set by the card issuer. '
"The facility should be provided on a 24x7 basis through several channels -- mobile application/internet banking/ATMs/interactive voice response (IVR). This facility may also be offered at branches/offices," said the notification.
The RBI has also asked the card issuers to send SMS or email to cardholders if there's any change in the card's status.