- New £100 contactless card limit starting Friday 15 October
- Three out of five debit card transactions are now done through contactless
- Critics and money experts fear the new limit will lead to an increase in theft and fraud
- Some banks will allow customers to lower their limits, while many offer the option of a non-contactless card if it is preferable.
- We asked major banks to see how they were reacting to the change.
Starting next Friday, Britons will be able to spend up to £100 using a contactless card without entering their PIN.
The national roll-out of the new £100 spending limit for contactless card payments begins 15 October, with governments, banks and retailers claiming it will help boost the economy.
According to UK Finance, the number of contactless payments in the UK has increased from seven per cent to 27 per cent of all payments over the past four years.
UK shoppers will soon be able to pay up to £100 for every transaction in store without having to enter their PIN code.
Growth accelerated in 2020 when contactless payments increased by 12 percent, with a 50 percent increase in the range from £30 to £45 from 1 April 2020.
The ratio of contactless debit card payments during the pandemic has increased from two in five in 2019 to three in five by September 2020.
UK Finance Chief Executive David Posting said: Contactless payments have proven to be very popular with consumers and more and more transactions are being conducted using contactless technology.
‘The increase in the £100 limit will allow people to pay for higher value transactions such as their weekly shop or fueling their car.
‘The payments industry has worked hard to set up the infrastructure to enable retailers to update their payment systems so that they can start providing this new high limit to their customers.’
But while many buyers would rarely welcome the convenience of entering their PIN, others would be more concerned about the potential security implications of having a pick pocket to take advantage of.
Some people would like to know if they can opt out, lower the limit, and in case of theft, how many times their card can be tapped, or blocked, before a PIN is required.
We spoke to each of the major banks to find out what they are doing to support those who are concerned about the new £100 contactless card limit.
Barclays says that through its app, customers can place a variety of card controls to personalize their card the way they want to use it.
For example, they can set spending limits, turn off certain payment types such as internet payments, change daily ATM withdrawal limits, and temporarily suspend payments in case their card is lost or stolen. You can choose to freeze or block.
While customers do not currently have a specific option to set their own contactless limits, they can set spending limits across all of their transactions, including contactless transactions.
Some critics and money experts fear the new £100 contactless limit could lead to an increase in fraud and theft.
The bank claims that contactless payments are covered by fraud protection similar to chip and PIN transactions, but it will occasionally ask customers to enter their PIN.
Barclays also offers its banking customers the non-contactless cards they prefer.
If you can’t find your card but don’t think it’s lost or stolen, you can use the app to freeze it temporarily.
This prevents using it to make in-store and online payments, and prevents withdrawals from cash machines.
Nationwide Building Society will offer its customers the ability to turn off the contactless function by October 15th, although customers can also request a non-contactless card if they wish.
Britain’s biggest mutual claim is that it plans to give its customers the ability to lower the limit in the future, although no date has been given as to when this will happen.
For those who use contactless cards, after a set number of transactions or when a specified amount is spent, depending on which is reached first, they need to input their PIN for added security. Although Nationwide will not disclose this figure it determines.
If you lose your card you can intercept the card through its banking app, giving you time to try and find it or cancel the card if your search efforts are in vain.
In any case it will withhold any contactless payments, while Nationwide claims that any payments made by anyone else before the card was reported to be stolen will be refunded.
It will not be possible to reduce the £100 limit for TSB customers, but you can choose to have a non-contactless card instead.
For those using a contactless card, TSB claims that you will be prompted to enter your PIN on occasions as a security measure.
You can report the loss or theft of your card through its banking app, internet banking or phone call.
TSB Claims You will benefit from its fraud refund guarantee if your card is stolen.
The bank claims that it has refunded 98 percent of all bank fraud cases.
NatWest and RBS
Although NatWest and RBS do not offer a non-contactless card option for those who prefer one, customers can effectively prevent their card from being contactless through the mobile banking app if they wish. From.
NatWest and RBS will sometimes force you to enter your PIN based on the total spend amount, although it will not disclose its limits for this to help prevent fraud.
Customers can also take advantage of the Freeze Card option in the app if they cannot find their card or believe it may be stolen.
Lloyds Banking customers will have access to new card controls that will allow them to turn contactless on and off or set their own contactless limits.
Lloyds Bank, Halifax and Bank of Scotland
Lloyds Bank, Halifax and Bank of Scotland customers will have control over their contactless…