Have credit cards become obsolete?

When it comes to credit card processing security, the focus tends to be on what happens when the card is swiped through the machine and what happens from that point on within the point of sales system. However, there is an overlooked component that is causing frustration for customers — who is actually using the card?

A recent article from KTVU — a Bay Area news outlet — profiled the story of social worker Regina Stidam. She was pick pocketed at a restaurant by two men and had her card used to purchase $1,800 worth of gift cards from a neighboring Target.

When you consider that in a way to get speed up transactions, many sales associates may not even see a credit card when it is swiped through the terminal. This process happens at many retailers. Just think of the times you have paid with plastic. How many times has an employee asked to see an I.D.?

"The questions ultimately arise: Are credit cards simply obsolete, even if we put smart chips in them? Is the better way to make your payments through your smartphone which you can secure in a multitude of ways?" the article reads.

This is an interesting concept to think about. Many organizations are looking for different ways to improve credit card security through payment processing software. However, should they consider upgrading the hardware and the kinds of payments they accept, in order to improve overall security? The idea of smartphones would require tech providers to jump on the bandwagon, which may be a while down the pipeline.

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