Bank of Indonesia made a change in how merchants can accept credit and debit cards in the country effective beginning of this month (hasn’t affected tourists yet because the country is closed for foreign arrivals until September – read more here).

Merchants can no longer accept cards with signature. Local cards come with a six-digit PIN, but international cards with four or five-digit PINs are also acceptable. Not sure how this affects contactless payments such as Apple Pay or tapping a credit card?

Here’s an excerpt from the Kompas (Google translation):

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Starting today, credit card transactions in Indonesia are required to use a six-digit PIN (Personal Identification Number) when making a transaction. This is in accordance with the mandate of Bank Indonesia (BI), which began July 1, 2020, where authentication through signatures will no longer be accepted.

In this rule, all credit card transactions that do not use PIN authentication will be immediately rejected by the Electronic Data Capture (EDC) machine at the merchant.

Conclusion

Who can remember more than a max handful of four, five, or six-digit PINs? I have ten+ PINs recorded in the back of my notepad, just in case I need to use a random card with a merchant or an ATM.

I would say that perhaps half of the cards that I have, allow you to choose your preferred PIN. Others have predetermined ones that you cannot change (you can always request a replacement one and hope for an easier). My European cards come with a PIN, but that is not the case with those issued in the United States and Hong Kong. Not sure if I can use them in Indonesia?

You would think that requiring cards with a chip had reduced the number of cloned cards that could be used with merchants for fraudulent transactions to an acceptable level?

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