The FINANCIAL — As advancements in technology and security change how people pay and verify their identity, Mastercard announced that cardholder signatures will now be optional, both on the card and on receipts.
For cardholders, not needing to sign creates a faster and more streamlined point of sale experience. Nowadays consumers experience this when they tap to pay—contactless card payments are quick, secure and don’t often require a signature.
This decision is aligned with evolving consumer preferences. In a survey conducted in the U.S., only 40 percent said they had signed the back of their cards, and one-third of those who haven’t signed said they don’t see the point in doing so. In the same survey, more than half of respondents believed they were just as secure without signing the back of their cards, and two-thirds wanted biometrics to replace signatures, passwords and PIN codes when paying with their card.
Starting in April 2019, Mastercard issuers globally will no longer be required to include a signature panel on the back of Mastercard products. This change follows the move to allow merchants the option to collect cardholder signatures for in-store purchases. Mastercard led the industry with this announcement in the U.S. and Canada last fall, and now extends this option to merchants around the globe.
Eliminating the need for signatures is part of an important shift toward advanced security technologies such as EMV® chip, contactless payments and advanced fraud management technologies. These innovations provide both greater security and a simpler, more convenient payment experience. In addition, consumers remain protected against fraud by Mastercard Zero Liability coverage.