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Sample ATM card.

An ATM card (also known as a bank card, client card, key card or cash card) is a card issued by a bank, credit union or building society that can be used at an ATM for deposits, withdrawals, account information, and other types of transactions, often through interbank networks.

Some ATM cards can also be used:

  • at a branch, as identification for in-person transactions
  • at merchants, for EFTPOS (point of sale) purchases

ATM cards are typically about 86 × 54 mm, ie ISO/IEC 7810 ID-1 size.

Unlike a debit card, in-store purchases or refunds with an ATM card can generally be made in person only, as they require authentication through a personal identification number or PIN. In other words, ATM cards cannot be used at merchants that only accept credit cards.

However, other types of transactions through telephone or online banking may be performed with an ATM card without in-person authentication. This includes account balance inquiries, electronic bill payments or in some cases, online purchases (see Interac Online).

In some countries, the two functions of ATM cards and debit cards are combined into a single card called a debit card or also commonly called a bank card. These are able to perform banking tasks at ATMs and also make point-of-sale transactions, both functions using a PIN. Canada's Interac and Europe's Maestro are examples of networks that link bank accounts with point-of-sale equipment.

Magnetic stripe cloning can be detected by the implementation of magnetic card reader heads and firmware that can read a signature embedded in all magnetic stripes during the card production process. This signature known as a "MagnePrint" or "BluPrint" can be used in conjunction with common two factor authentication schemes utilized in ATM, debit/retail point-of-sale and prepaid card applications.[1][2]

ATM cleaning cards are the primary means of cleaning ATMs to ensure that the machine stays functioning properly.

See also

Notes

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