Everything you need to know about your chip card.

How do I use my GEICO FCU Visa® Debit Chip Card to make a purchase?

Chip cards are very easy to use. You will insert your card directly into the payment terminal through a slot at the bottom or top of the machine. This process is known as "card dipping". Once your card has been inserted, simply follow the prompts on the screen. When the terminal says the transaction is complete, you may remove your card.

Is there anything different about using a GEICO FCU Visa® Debit Chip Card at an ATM?

Chip-enabled ATMs have all of the features you are used to. You likely won't notice any physical difference between a magnetic stripe ATM and a chip-enabled ATM. Simply begin the transaction as you normally would and follow the prompts. A chip-enabled ATM will guide you through the transaction. Depending on the type of ATM, your experience may differ slightly.

Can I still use my GEICO FCU Visa® Debit Chip Card at a non-chip-enabled ATM or merchant terminal?

Yes. Your card will have a chip and a magnetic stripe to accommodate any situation. However, if your card is read through a swipe of the magnetic stripe, you will lose that extra level of chip security.

Can I use my GEICO FCU Visa® Debit Chip Card outside of the U.S.?

Yes. The U.S. is the last major market still using magnetic stripe card technology. Many countries moved to chip technology years ago to combat high fraud rates. Having a chip card will make it easier for you to make purchases and complete ATM transactions when you travel internationally.

More on Chip Cards

What is a Chip Card?

You may have heard the term Smart Card. Or Chip Card. Or EMV Card. All of these terms refer to cards with EMV technology built into a small chip on the front of your card. EMV stands for Europay, Mastercard and Visa, the three organizations who defined the initial specifications. It is the new global standard which is meant to help protect consumers and reduce the costs of fraud.

How does it work?

The chip on the front of your card is a computer chip that differs from the magnetic stripe on a traditional credit card. The data stored on a magnetic stripe is static which means if the data is obtained by someone, they now have all the information they need to make purchases.

The EMV chip, however, creates a unique transaction code each time the card is used to make a purchase. That transaction code cannot be duplicated. If the chip data from a particular point of sale is obtained by a third party, duplicating the information would not be of any benefit since the information created during the transaction cannot be used again.

So while the EMV chip will not prevent data breaches, it will make it incredibly difficult for anyone to profit from the information they've received. In countries where EMV compliance is widespread, fraudulent credit card activities have dropped considerably.

It's important to acknowledge that the current EMV adoption plans will only reduce the potential for fraud during card present transactions and will not impact card-not-present fraud, which is of concern due to the growing use of e-commerce.