Gemalto launches EMV banking cards in South Africa

gemalto1Vodacom m-pesa card. (Image source: Gemalto)Digital security provider Gemalto has announced the deployment of prepaid EMV banking cards to complement telecom firm Vodacom’s m-pesa mobile wallet service in South Africa

Herman Singh, managing executive of m-commerce at Vodacom, said, “By expanding our m-pesa mobile wallet offering with the banking card, we have been able to add an entirely new level of functionality, which we think is critical to the success of m-pesa in South Africa.”

Singh revealed that the card links to m-pesa accounts and gave users the freedom to make payments for goods and services without the need to carry cash.

According to Gemalto, the EMV banking cards will be accepted at any of the 240,000 EMV-compliant payment terminals and over 27,000 ATMs throughout the country.

“The m-pesa card is available direct from 8,000 Vodacom agents and enrollment with the company’s secure system is a quick and easy process. Users can check current balances via the mobile wallet app and receive SMS alerts when funds are running low. Furthermore, because it is a PIN-protected virtual account, the user’s credit remains safe even if the card is lost or stolen,” added Gemalto.

Thierry Mesnard, senior vice-president for Africa at Gemalto, noted that Vodacom has become the first mobile operator to initiate the large-scale rollout of an EMV banking card.


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