What to know about the debit chip cards

Coming to a wallet near you: new debit chip cards. The newcards look like your old cards with one exception: they have a small squaremetallic chip on the front. The chip holds your payment data - some of which iscurrently held on the magnetic stripe on your old cards - and provides a uniquecode for each purchase. The metallic chip is designed to reduce fraud,including counterfeiting.

Here's how it works: To buy something in a store, instead ofswiping your card, you'll put it into a reader and follow the prompts on thescreen. Then you might have to sign or enter a PIN. With each transaction, thechip generates a unique code needed for approval. The code is good only forthat transaction. Because the security code is always changing, it's much moredifficult for someone to steal and use.It is important to remember that chip cards safety measures work onlyfor in-person or card present transaction at properly equipped retail point ofsale terminals and ATM machines.

There will be no change in the way you use your card onlineor by phone. Online retail transactionsusing chips cards do not offer the same safety and security because thetechnology only works if a machine can physically read the chip on the card. That means chip cards won't prevent crooksfrom using stolen card numbers to buy online or by phone. When making apurchase on line with your card, make sure it is a trusted and secure site. So it's a good idea to still guard your cardinformation closely, and check statements for suspicious activity. If you notice suspicious activity notifyTri-County Bank at once.

*Due to rising fraud trends, we have added security protections to your Trio Card. Effective immediately all gas station Pay-at-Pump transactions will require you to enter your PIN at the terminal (debit base). Please contact the bank if you need to have your PIN reset at 1-888-346-0800.*