Target bucks national EMV trend by issuing PINs

Two years after a massive credit card breach, Target is going against a national trend by issuing PINs with its store branded credit and debit cards.

According to CNNMoney, the national retailer is in the process of re-issuing all of its REDcard credit and debit cards for EMV, but is doing so with PINs, something not current required in the U.S.

"[A PIN] offers an additional layer of security to help protect against someone using the card if it is lost or stolen," a company spokesperson told CNNMoney in an email. 

The new embedded chip, or EMV, cards have been used internationally for some time now, where they are often called "chip and PIN" cards. There, when customers insert their card into a reader, they must enter a PIN, much like with U.S. debit cards, in order to authorize the transaction. 

America's implementation of EMV cards is being done so without the PIN requirement, opting instead for customers to sign for their purchases just as they do now. While there are improved security measures in using the chip itself, not using the PIN removes an added layer of protection.

Target is currently in the process of getting the new cards out to customers, and hopes to finish by spring time next year. Card holders will be given a temporary PIN and have the ability to create a custom one once activated.

Once in place, the PIN will be required for those cards in Target stores. Customers with REDcards will have the ability to use their PIN at other retailers if they accept PINs. Likewise, customers with other EMV cards that also have PINs can now use those in Target stores.

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