Wells Fargo is expanding its offering of EMV chip credit cards to all its Visa credit card holders as the payment technology slowly migrates onto U.S. shores.
The bank said Monday that its Visa credit card customers can request a chip card by calling the customer service phone number on the back of their current card. (The chip program is not available to the small number of Wells Fargo credit card holders who have a MasterCard or American Express card, according to company spokeswoman Natalie Brown.)
EMV chip cards are nearly impossible to counterfeit because the embedded microprocessor chip uniquely encrypts the transaction and card each time the card is used. Chip cards also are widely used abroad and sometimes pose problems for Americans who try to pay with traditional, magnetic-stripe cards in foreign countries.
Wells Fargo was one of the first U.S. banks to jump into the EMV ring. It launched a pilot program with Visa in the spring of 2011 and began offering chip cards by invitation to Visa Signature cardholders in 2012.
Other credit card issuers have followed suit. Bank of America, Chase, Citi, U.S. Bank and American Express all offer chip cards to some of their corporate and individual customers. The rollout of chip cards goes hand-in-hand with the push by Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover to force U.S. retailers to accept chip cards over the next several years.
Are you a Wells Fargo Visa credit card holder? If so, will you get a chip card?
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