FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY | Staff Reporter, Philippines

Philippine banks ordered to upgrade ATM systems

Aim is to cut down on fraud.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the central bank, is ordering banks to speed-up their changeover to more secure chip-based information storage ATM cards from the more vulnerable magnetic stripe ATM cards that are constant targets of skimming.

BSP said international criminal syndicates specializing in ATM fraud constantly target countries using magnetic stripe ATM cards.

It allowed a window period of until 2017 to change ATM machines but now expect banks to comply sooner than the deadline. The window will allow Philippine banks to comply with the EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) standard and “Triple DES” (Data Encryption Standard).

EMV is a global standard for the inter-operation of integrated circuit cards (IC cards or "chip cards") and IC card capable point of sale terminals and ATMs for authenticating credit and debit card transactions.

Triple DES provides a relatively simple method of protecting against brute force attacks without the need to design a completely new block cipher algorithm.

BSP’s new regulation requires banks to adopt triple DES by 2015 and shift from the magnetic-stripe technology in ATM cards to more secure EMV chip-enabled cards by 2017.

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