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1998-01-13 09:03:22


Credit Cards Are Being Rejected for 00 Date



The stories about 00 date credit cards are now coming almost daily. Visa and Mastercard lifted the ban on 00 cards in October, 1997. But this seems to have been premature.

This points to the problem of interconnections. Visa and Mastercard seem to have fixed their internal systems, but their systems are more than internal. The definition of "system" is too narrow. The system includes all sources of input (Point of Sale terminals). In 2000, it also will include Point of Payment terminals, i.e., banks. If the banks aren't compliant, the credit card companies can't guarantee payment, which is the crucial service they offer to buyers and sellers. The companies will have to quit. A credit card is no better than the source of its credit.

This story appeared in the LONDON DAILY TELEGRAPH (Jan. 10).

* * * * * * *

It is only recently that high street banks have started to issue cards carrying the 00 expiry date. Until last October Visa International did not allow any of its 20,000 member banks to issue 00-dated cards.

Matthew Talbot, a senior vice president of Visa, said: "We felt that by October it was an appropriate time to lift the ban." He said that Visa was satisfied that the vast majority of terminals were Year 2000 compliant. Some terminals had to be completely replaced, while new software was installed on others. Barclays Bank was one of the first big high street banks to take the plunge last October. After three months of issuing 00-dated cards, it admitted that it has received around 300 complaints from customers with the new cards.

As more banks join the 00 expiry-date club, it is likely that more customers could encounter difficulties using them. If your credit card is due for renewal, the replacement card may well carry the 00 expiry date.


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