: Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, plastic material formed through injection molding, used for some smart cards.

Access Control Card: Magnetic or chip cards with or without photo used to enter restricted areas eg. ID badges.

Automated Teller Machine (ATM): Also known as a cash machine, cash dispenser or hole-in-the-wall machine. A computerised self-service device permitting the holder of an appropriate card and personal identification number (PIN) to withdraw cash from their account and access other banking services.



Bank or Base Identification Number – BIN: The magnetic stripe on a card will also contain the valid BIN in the first 4 / 6 digits, for a retailer’s terminal to accept such a card.

Biometrics: Biometric methods of identification work by measuring unique human characteristics as a way to confirm identity, for example, finger or iris scanning or dynamic signature verification.

Blank Cards: Cards with no printing usually used in imagining machines

Blank Plastic Cards: Cards with no printing usually used in imagining machines



Card – not – present (CNP): A transaction where the merchant, retailer or other service provider does not have physical access to the payment card. Examples include transactions over the Internet, telephone, fax or by mail order.

Card – remotely – present: A transaction where the merchant, retailer or other service provider does not have physical access to the payment card, but where the card is inserted in a device by the customer and the card details are verified by an electronic process. Examples are transactions at unattended payment terminals, by telephones equipped with card readers, or via the Internet when a card reader is in use.

Card Authentication Method (CAM): The means by which a plastic card is determined genuine and not counterfeit. An example of one such feature is the hologram.

Card issuer: A bank or building society issuing payment cards, ATM cards or cheque guarantee cards to its customers. For payment and ATM – only cards, the card issuer undertakes responsibility to settle transactions made with the card (except in some cases where fraud is present).

Card scheme(s): Card schemes set the business rules that govern the issue of the payment cards that carry their logo. Typically, these rules apply throughout the world to ensure interoperability of cards. In many countries, domestic schemes also operate. The schemes operate the clearing and settlement of payment card transactions. In the UK, banks and building societies must be members of the appropriate scheme to issue cards and acquire card transactions. Examples of international card schemes in the UK are Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club.

Card Security Code (CSC): The last three or four digits of a number printed on or just below the signature panel on the back of payment cards. The number is used to help confirm that a card number that has been provided is genuine.

Cardholder Verification Method (CVM): The means by which the presenter of the card may be identified as genuine.

Cash machine/cash dispenser: See Automated Teller Machine (ATM).

Charge card: A payment card, enabling holders to make purchases and to draw cash to a pre – arranged ceiling, the terms of which include the obligation to settle the account in full at the end of a specified period. Cardholders are normally charged an annual fee.

Chargeback: Transactions returned by an issuer to the acquirer because they have been disputed by the cardholder and/or found to be improper by the issuer.

Cheque guarantee card: Also known as a cheque card. A card issued by a bank or building society for the purpose of guaranteeing payment by, or supporting the encashment of, a cheque up to a specified value (£50, £100, £250). All cheque guarantee cards in the UK Domestic Cheque Guarantee Card Scheme depict the bust of William Shakespeare in either the cheque guarantee hologram or logo on the card.

Chip: A piece of silicon etched with an electronic circuit.

Chip and PIN card: A payment card containing a chip that requires the use of a PIN as the preferred method of cardholder verification at the point – of – sale (not only at ATMs). In this context, ‘preferred’ relates to the cardholder authentication process demanded by the combination of card and terminal that, in the case of chip and PIN card inserted in a chip and PIN – enabled terminal, requires customers to enter their 4 – digit PIN at the point – of – sale.

Chip card: Also known as an integrated circuit card (ICC) or smart card. A chip card holds details on a secure computer chip that can store and process information; chip cards usually also have a magnetic stripe.

CIFAS: The UK’s Fraud Prevention Service – CIFAS is a system for preventing fraud. It allows member organisations to exchange details of applications for products or services that are believed to be fraudulent, because the information provided by the applicant fails verification checks. Members can also exchange information about accounts that are suspected of being fraudulently misused or insurance claims that are suspected of being made fraudulently. This exchange of information is referred to in a notification clause on application forms and agreements.

Cirrus: A MasterCard brand enabling a cardholder to obtain cash at an ATM.

Code 10 – A Code 10 call is made by a point – of – sale retailer, through a retailer’s acquirer authorisation centre, when the retailer is suspicious of a card, a cardholder, the circumstances of the transaction or when the retailer has been instructed to make such calls as part of a tactical fraud prevention measure.

Coercivity: A measure of the strength of a magnetic field. Fields are expressed as low or high by the terms LoCo and HiCo.

Combi-card: Holding both contact and contactless technology on one card.

Compromised Card: Any type of physical card captured with a potential to be used for fraudulent purposes, generally having been reprogrammed with genuine card details; e.g:

Contact: A point of electrical connection between a smart card and its external interface device.

Contact Card: Any card where information is transferred to a reader via a series of contact points located on the card.

Contactless Card: Smart card which transfers data using radio frequency technology via a transmitter and receiver.

Convenience: Refers to the location of ATMs in so – called convenience stores, comprising newsagents, corner shops, off licenses, open – all – hours general stores.

Counterfeiting: Counterfeiting involves the fraudulent reproduction of original documents/ instruments in a manner that enables the fraudster to pass them off as genuine/ original items.

Counterfiet Cheques/ Bank Drafts: Cheques/ drafts are manufactured/ printed/ copied onto non – cheque paper but usually drawn on accounts held by the bank and presented for payment via the clearing system/ special presentation/ over the counter etc. Printing is to a very high standard that is virtually identical to the originals in all respects. Ever more sophisticated they now include quality designs, UV security features and ostensibly watermarked paper.

Credit card: A payment card enabling the holder to make purchases and to draw cash up to a pre – arranged ceiling. The credit granted can be settled in full by the end of a specified period or can be settled in part, in which case interest is charged. In the case of cash withdrawals, interest is normally charged from the transaction date. Cardholders may be charged an annual fee.

Crime Reference Number – CRN: The number provided by a Police Station accepting a report of fraud from a customer/ bank/ other financial institution that is required to trace the case/ report when communicating with the police at any future time after the initial report.

Cross – border Fraud: Fraud perpetrated on a plastic card, or using a card number, in a country other than the country of issue.



Debit card: A payment card linked to a bank or building society account, used to pay for goods and services by debiting the holder’s account; usually also combined with other facilities such as cash machine and cheque guarantee functions.

Degaussing: Magnetic stripe data erasure.

Digitizing: Conversion of non – textual data to digital form.

Domestic Cheque Guarantee Card Scheme: A UK scheme whose members issue cheque guarantee cards to personal customers to guarantee the holder’s cheques up to a specified amount, and providing common, easily identifiable design features to simplify acceptance procedures at point – of – sale.



Electron: A Visa debit card. All Electron purchases are subject to electronic authorisation.

Electronic banking: A service enabling users to access banking facilities over the Internet or other computer network. Also known as e – banking and, when the Internet is used, Internet banking (see also remote banking).

Electronic commerce (e – commerce): Transactions that are conducted over an electronic network where the buyer and merchant are not at the same physical location, e.g. plastic card transactions via the Internet.

Electronic Gift Card: A retail prepaid card usually initiated at cash or checkout.

Electronic Point of Sale – EPOS: A terminal or similar device that may be used at the point of sale; e.g. shop, bank etc.

Electronic purse (e – purse): Also known as an e – purse. A stored – value payment card used to pay for goods and services. It is an alternative to cash. The card can be disposable or re – loadable. The stored value is reduced as payments are made.

Embossing: Characters in relief on the front surface of a card.

EMV: The internationally – agreed standards for chip payment cards, originally agreed by Europay, MasterCard and Visa. EMV standards are maintained by EMVCo, an organisation owned and managed by MasterCard, Visa and JCB.

Encoding: Recording electronic information on to a magnetic stripe.

Encryption: A method of making information secret, so that only a person who knows the necessary key or password can understand or decrypt the information.

Europay MasterCard and Visa (EMV): The internationally agreed standard for chip payment cards, originally agreed by Europay, MasterCard and Visa. EMV standards are maintained by EMVCo, an organisation owned and managed by MasterCard, Visa and JCB.



Financial Hologram Card: Financial cards using a hologram, 30 mil thickness, ISO cards, MasterCards/Visa and others.

Financial Other: Usually Debit, Check, Charge or ATM cards not using a hologram.

FIPS: Federal Information Processing Standards

Floor limit: A limit on the value of each transaction, agreed between the merchant and acquiring bank, above which authorisation must be obtained by the merchant, from the card issuer.

Fraud Intelligence Bureau (FIB): Located at APACS, it is the UK banking industry’s rapid response group and leading centre for exchange of information and intelligence between police and banks. It gathers intelligence on plastic card fraud, particularly that relating to counterfeit, on behalf of APACS members and shares data, information; advice and tip – offs with the Police to combat organised crime.



Gift Card: A retail prepaid card usually initiated at cash or checkout.

GSM: Global System for Mobile Communication, a widely used digital mobile phone standard.



Hologram: A flat optical image which looks three – dimensional to the naked eye.

Holographic foil: the foil used to carry embossed holographic images.



ID Card: Card which identifies both the bearer and the issuer. All financial transaction cards are ID cards.

ID Card: Card which identifies both the bearer and the issuer. All financial transaction cards are ID cards.

Identity Theft / Fraud: This occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your name, social security number, credit card number, or other identifying information without your permission, to commit fraud or other crimes. It commonly arises from the interception of mail, by being ‘socially engineered’, or even having your bin raided.

Independent ATM deployer (IAD): Any institution, other than a bank or building society, owning and installing ATMs. In some card industry publications and other media these institutions are sometimes referred to as ISOs, an acronym that is derived from both independent service operators and independent sales organisations.

Industry Hot Card File (IHCF): A computerised list of reported lost and stolen cards available to merchants to assist in the identification and prevention of fraudulent transactions.

Initialization: Programming a smart card chip with data that is the same for a batch of cards.

Integrated circuit card (ICC): See chip card.

Intelligent detection systems: Computer systems used by the banking industry to help identify fraudulent card use before the loss is reported. Also known as knowledge – based systems and neural networks.

Internet order: Transaction conducted over the Internet with a merchant selling goods or services.

ISO: International Standards Organization, central body for formation and dissemination of industry standards for all national standards bodies.

Issuer: A bank or building society issuing payment cards, ATM / cash machine cards or cheque guarantee cards to its customers. For payment cards, the card issuer undertakes responsibility to settle transactions made with the card (except in some cases where fraud is present).



Lamination: Using plates on a press to fuse the various layers of a plastic card together.

Liability: The obligation to pay an amount owing. In the case of card fraud liability is used to refer to the party that is responsible for covering or absorbing the amount defrauded in respect of a cardholder dispute.

Lithography or Offset Printing: Most common process for plastic card printing based on the concept that oil and water are not compatible. The ink represents the oil and the alkaline fountain solution represents the water. These are the two main components which must interact during the printing process, allowing the ink to adhere to the image area of a printing plate while the fountain solution repels the ink from the non – image area.

Loyalty Card: Usually a retail frequent user card offering promotional benefits.



Maestro: A MasterCard debit card scheme enabling cardholders to make payments to participating merchants in the scheme (typically at retailers’ point – of – sale terminals).

Magnetic stripe: The stripe that currently appears on the back of all payment cards issued by financial institutions. It contains essential customer and account information, most of which is usually also embossed on the card.

Mail Order: A CNP transaction in which an order form is filled in by a customer, including payment details, and mailed to the merchant that is selling goods or services.

MasterCard: An international card scheme.

MasterCard SecureCode: An internet based secure payments solution developed by MasterCard.

Membership Card: Usually a club member card for ID purpose.

Memory Card: smart card that stores and retrieves serial “streams” of data that are sent to or received from the semiconductor chip.

Merchant: Any person, firm or corporation that has contracted with an acquirer to process transactions.

Microprocessor Card: contains a microprocessor chip with a microcode that defines a command structure, a data file structure and a security structure in the card.

MO/TO: An acronym for mail order/telephone order that refers to card – not – present transactions.

Most common items counterfeited include:

Multi – application Card: Smart card that can handle a variety of applications.



Non – magnetic Card: Cards without a magnetic stripe eg. ID cards.

Non-magnetic Card: Cards without a magnetic stripe eg. ID cards.



Oersted: The unit of magnetic coercive force used to define difficult of erasure of magnetic material.

Off-line: A transaction via paper or reader not connected to a central system.

On-line: A transaction on a terminal permanently connected to a network that is on – line to the card account.

Optical Card: Card with information recorded on an optical memory stripe, similar to compact disks.

Other Secure Card: Usually Retail , Oil/Gas, Telecom, Transit, Pay TV cards.



Pay TV Card: Usually a chip card subscribing to a television service eg. satellite TV.

Payment card: A generic term for any plastic card (credit, debit, charge etc.) used on its own to pay for goods and services.

Personal Identification Number (PIN): A set of numeric characters, usually a four – digit sequence, used by a cardholder to verify their identity at a point – of – sale (POS) or by a customer activated device, such as a cash machine. The number is generated by the card issuer when the card is first issued and may be changed by the cardholder thereafter.

Personalization: Printing, encoding and programming a card with data specific to an individual cardholder.

Phishing: Phishing is the name given to the practice of sending e – mails at random purporting to come from a genuine company operating on the Internet, in an attempt to trick customers of that company into disclosing information at a bogus website operated by fraudsters. These e – mails usually claim that it is necessary to “update” or “verify” your customer account information and they urge people to click on a link from the e – mail which takes them to the bogus website. Any information entered on the bogus website will be captured by the criminals for their own fraudulent purposes.

PIN Pad: The numeric pad into which a cardholder enters their PIN to authorise a transaction. PIN pads may be fixed or portable.

PIV Card : Personal Identity Verification Card

Plastic Access Card: Magnetic or chip cards with or without photo used to enter restricted areas (eg. ID badges.)

Plastic Membership Card: Usually a club member card for ID purpose.

Point-of-sale (POS): A physical location, such as a checkout, till or sale point, where a customer makes a purchase.

POS terminal: An electronic device used to process card payments at point-of-sale.

POS transaction: A transaction that takes place at point – of – sale.

Prepaid Card: A card paid for at point of sale permitting the holder to buy goods and services up to the prepaid value.

Promotional Card: A card offering special benefits to users eg, discount card.

Protected Memory Card: smart card that requires a secret code or PIN number to be entered before the data can be sent to or received from the semiconductor chip.

Proximity Card: A contactless card whose presence and data can be sensed by an interface device not in physical contact with the card.

PVC: Polyvinyl chloride, the most widely used plastic material for ID cards.



Radio Frequency Card (RFID): A proximity card in which the coupling between the card and the interface device is by radio.



Screen Printing: Method in which ink is forced through a design – bearing screen made of silk or other material onto the substrate being printed.

Secure Card: Cards with an intrinsic value. eg. financial, other secure etc.

SET: Secure Electronic Transaction, a MasterCard/Visa backed standard to allow safe Internet trading via encryption certification of all parties involved in a transaction.

Shoulder Surfing: A method employed by fraudsters to obtain PIN details by standing in the vicinity of the cardholder whilst they use the ATM and covertly observing them tap in the details.

Signature Panel: The area of an ID card where the cardholder enters a signature.

SIM: Subscriber Identification Module: the smart card necessary for the operation of GSM phones.

Skimming: Copying the magnetic stripe encoding from one card to another.

Smart card: See chip card.

Smart Card (aka Chip Card, IC Card): A plastic credit card sized card that contains one or more semiconductor chips. In the capability category, there are three types:

Stored Value Card (aka cash card, electronic purse, prepaid card): A financial card that is loaded with a certain amount of money with each purchase amount deducted from the card.

Substrate: Material upon which a plastic card is printed.

Switch: A UK debit card scheme rebranded as Maestro with effect from 1 July 2004.



Telecom Card: Magnetic or chip card used for telephone services eg. GSM card, prepaid card.

Telephone order: Transaction completed over the phone to a merchant selling goods and services.

Traditional Card: A magnetic or non magnetic card not using chip card technology.

Transit Card: Magnetic or chip card used for transportation services eg. subway card.



UV Printing: UV printing is used to print on plastic, foil, and specialty substrates. UV light is used to dry specially formulated inks that are printed on non – porous materials. In conventional printing, ink dries as it is absorbed into paper. Because plastic is not absorbent, the ink must be dried on the top surface using UV light.



Verified by Visa: An internet – based secure payments solution developed by Visa.

Visa: An international card scheme.

Visa Debit: A debit card scheme enabling cardholders to make payments to participating merchants in the scheme (typically at retailers’ point-of-sale terminals).



Weigand Wire: Magnetic media embedded in cards for access control applications.