The deadline for State Bank of India account holders to replace their old magstripe debit and credit cards is drawing close. The biggest lender in the country has asked its users to upgrade their SBI cards to ones with EMV chips by December 31, 2018 on orders from the Reserve Bank of India.
Magstripe cards are those credit and debit cards which only have a magnetic stripe at the back to store user data and can be easily skimmed for the same. Cards with the EMV chip, named so after its creators Europay, MasterCard and Visa, were introduced as a more secure means of payment. The EMV chip carries microprocessor data embedded into it which has all important information about the user, offering protection from ATM fraud.
Keeping these benefits in mind, the RBI had asked the banks to ensure that their customers only use debit and credit cards with EMV chips. The SBI advisory to its customers asking them to replace their cards is in line with the RBI directive that all magstripe cards will have to be exchanged with EMV chip cards by the end of this year.
"As per the RBI guidelines, you are required to change your Magstripe Debit Cards to EMV Chip Debit Cards by the end of 2018. The conversion process is absolutely safe and comes with no charges," SBI has said in an earlier statement.
To find whether your credit and debit cards have the EMV chip or not, you need to look for a golden chip on the left end of the card. If you don't find one there, it means you have an old magstripe card which has to be replaced by December 31. SBI has said that no charges or any maintenance charges in future will be exacted to upgrade to the new EMV chip cards.
To replace the old SBI magstripe cards, customers can visit the SBI website or their home branches. For replacing the cards via the website, customers will have to log in to www.onlinesbi.com using their user ID and password and select 'ATM Card Services' under the 'eServices' tab and initiate the process to get a new card issued.